Skip to main content
McMaster University Menu Search

Herring D. Ann, Professor

D. Ann Herring


Emeritus Faculty
Department of Anthropology

Area(s) of Interest:


Research & Supervisory Interests

My primary research interests center on the anthropology of infectious disease and epidemics.  This involves studying the biosocial circumstances that give rise to epidemics and facilitate their spread from place to place,  as well as the biosocial processes that ensue from the disease experience.  I’m interested in the way populations and societies – past and present – understand and are transformed by epidemics, and in the ways in which patterns of health and disease change through time.  My work straddles the Department’s strengths in the anthropology of health, human biology, ethnohistory and the anthropology of death. 

Much of my current research focuses on the determinants of health in Canada, with a particular emphasis on 19th and 20th century epidemics (especially influenza and tuberculosis), nutrition, and environmental health.


PhD Toronto, 1988


Courses (2015-16)

Fall: ANTHROP 4S03 - The Anthropology of Infectious Disease


Publications (selected)

2015 Far from Home and Down with the 'Flu: The Polish Army at Niagara-on-the-Lake, 1917-1919 (with K. Bogaert and J. Van Koeverden). In: Lives in Transition:  Longitudinal Analysis from Historical Sources, edited by Kris Inwood and Peter Baskerville. Montreal: McGill-Queens University Press.
2015  The first wave of the 1918 influenza pandemic among soldiers of the Canadian Expeditionary Force.  (with Alex Rewegan, Kandace Bogaert, Melissa Yan and Alain Gagnon).  American Journal of Human Biology doi.10.1002/ajhb.22713.

2015 Tracing "the trail of infected armies": mobilizing for war, the spread of the 1918 influenza pandemic, and the case of the Polish Army Camp at Niagara-on-the-Lake, 1917-1918.  (with Kandace Bogaert and Jane Van Koeverden).  In:  Lives in Motion:  Longitudinal Analysis from Historical Sources,  edited by Kris Inwood and Peter Baskerville.  Montreal:  McGill-Queen's University Press, p. 274-291.

2014  Damage Control:  the Untold Story of Venereal Disease in Hamilton, 1900-1950, edited by D. Ann Herring.  Hamilton:  Department of Anthropology, McMaster University.

2013  Age-specific mortality during the 1918 influenza pandemic:  unravelling the mystery of high young adult mortality.  (with Alain Gagnon et al).  PLOS ONE 8(8):e69586. doi.10.1371/journal.pone.0069586.

2012  Ch2olera:  Hamilton's Forgotten Epidemics.  edited by D. Ann Herring and Heather T. Battles.  Hamilton:  Department of Anthropology, McMaster University.

2012 The North/South divide: social inequality and mortality from the 1918 influenza pandemic in Hamilton, Ontario (with Ellen Korol). In: The 1918-1920 Influenza Pandemic in Canada, edited by Magda Fahrni and Esyllt Jones. Vancouver: University of British Columbia Press, p. 97-112.

2011 Collecting, collections, and practice in the anthropologies of health and disease (with Christianne V. Stephens). Reviews in Anthropology 40 (3): 232-260. doi: 10.1080/00938157.2011.602611

2011 Syndemics in global health (with M. Singer, J. Littleton, and M. Rock). In: Companion to Medical Anthropology, edited by Merrill Singer and Pam Erickson. Oxford: Wiley. doi: 10.1002/9781444395303.ch8

2011  A draft genome of Yersinia pestis from victims of the Black Death. (with Kirsti Bos et al).  Nature 478: 506-510.  doi:10.1038/nature 10549

2010  Recurrence and Resilience:  The Third Wave of the 1918-19 Influenza Pandemic in Hamilton.  edited by D. Ann Herring and Sally Carraher.  Hamilton:  Department of Anthropology, McMaster University.

2010 Plagues and Epidemics: Infected Spaces Past and Present (with A.C. Swedlund, eds). Oxford: Berg Publishers.

2010 Lost in transition: explaining and treating influenza in the British army in the 1830s and 1840s (with J. Padiak). In Canadian Bulletin of Medical History 27(2):343-361.

2010 The coming plague of avian influenza (with S. Lockerbie). In: Plagues and Epidemics: Infected Spaces Past and Present, edited by D. A. Herring and A. C. Swedlund. Oxford: Berg Publishers.

2010 Emerging themes in anthropology and epidemiology: geographic spread, evolving pathogens, and syndemics. (with L. Sattenspiel) In: Companion to Physical Anthropology, edited by C. S. Larsen. Wiley-Blackwell.

2009 Viral panic, vulnerabilities and the next pandemic. In: Health, Risk and Adversity, edited by C. Panter-Brick and A. Fuentes. London: Berghahn Press.

2009 Global panic, local repercussions: economic and nutritional effects of bird flu in Vietnam (with S. Lockerbie). In:Anthropology and Public Health, 2nd edition. edited by R. Hahn and M. Inhorn. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

2008 Multiplying and Dividing: Tuberculosis in Canada and Aotearoa New Zealand. (with Judith Littleton, Julie Park, and Tracy Farmer, eds). Research in Anthropology and Linguistics-3, No. 3.[electronic monograph series, Dept. of Anthropology, University of Auckland, NewZealand.]. URI: