"Universal Hygiene" and Specialists in Hygiene in Lviv at the Turn of the XIX and XX Centuries

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Vira Trach

10.4.2024, 18:30

Conference Room of the Center for Urban History / zoom

We invite you to the lecture by researcher Vira Trach, and thus we continue our series on Lviv's experiences of the modern, entitled "Let's Have a City..." in 2024.

The "long nineteenth century" is known as the century of big cities, the century of exhibitions, and the century of change. It is also sometimes known as the century of hygiene. In the 1820s, the first organized hygiene movement arose in France, and its leaders introduced the concept of "public hygiene" as a public health concept. And specialists in this field began to be called hygienists (or specialists in hygiene).

Throughout the nineteenth century, public health underwent a period of intense development and simultaneously became a prominent factor in modernization processes. Under the influence of many factors, "public hygiene" becomes a part of the policy of the modern states, a field of state and national interests. The success of its implementation is one of the key indicators of modernity, progress, and civilization of states, regions, and cities. The concept of hygiene forms a significant part of the imagination of what a modern city and urban lifestyle should look like.

In her lecture, Vira Trach will delve into the hygienists' communities and the hygiene movement in Lviv in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. She will examine the centers of the movement and the main social agents of change in the field of public health in Lviv, and she will outline the professional environment of hygienists. The researcher will also talk about two medical exhibitions that showcased hygiene and mention hygiene magazines. Based on the case of the scarlet fever epidemic of 1908-1910 and the measures taken in the field of urban hygiene by the authorities of that time, the lecturer will focus on the practical implementation of public health ideas and practices in Lviv and the involvement of hygienists.

Center's researcher Vladyslava Moskalets will moderate the event.

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Vira Trach

A historian, currently is working on her dissertation on the hygiene movement in Lviv in the late XIX and early XX centuries.


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Vladyslava Moskalets

Center for Urban History

A historian and researcher at the Center for Urban History. At the Center, she is conducting a research project on Lviv’s urban elites in the second half of the XIX and early XX centuries.


Cover Image: Chemical laboratory in Lviv, 1912 / Sprawozdanie z czynności laboratoryum chemicznego miejskiego za rok 1912, Lwów / 1913

Portrait: Marta Tymoshenko