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Bill Kent Memorial Lecture

Professor John Henderson delivers the 2017 Bill Kent Memorial Lecture
On 5 October, leading social historian of renaissance Italy, Professor John Henderson, delivered the 2017 Bill Kent Memorial Lecture to a packed audience.

Coping with Plague: Public Health and Epidemics in Renaissance Italy was the topic of the 2017 Bill Kent Memorial Lecture, dedicated to renowned scholar of the Italian Renaissance and Founding Director of the Monash University Prato Centre, Professor Bill Kent. Staff, students, alumni, and fellow scholars gathered to pay tribute to Bill and to hear Professor Henderson's re-assessment of the political response to plague. Focusing on the second plague pandemic in Renaissance Italy, Professor Henderson explored the evolution of public health responses to this devastating epidemic, including the use of quarantine with the establishment of isolation hospitals. Drawing on court cases, he demonstrated that the local population did not passively accept health board decrees, but sought to maintain their own strategies for survival. The vote of thanks was given by the Deputy Dean of the Faculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences, Professor Ross Coppel, an internationallly renowned expert in infectious diseases.