Tognotti, Eugenia (1998) Malaria in Sardinia. International Journal of Anthropology, Vol. 13 (3-4), p. 237-242. eISSN 1824-3096. Article.
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Sardinia held the unenviable primacy regarding the highest mortality index due to malaria
from 1880 to past the actual War years, when the Rockefeller Foundation eradicated its vector
Anopheles labranchiae both within the island and around all of the Mediterranean basin.
During the half of the century proceding the discoveries of the transmission of malaria and
DDT, all the strategies of the antimalarial campaigns had many motifs in relation to each new
scientific discovery. During the previous period of time and, especially, during the first twenty
years after the unification of Italy, the antimalarial strategy was directed towards the hydraulic
drainage (in accordance with the Baccarini law of 1882) because all were convinced that the
draining of the ponds and marshes did away with the infamous "miasmas" which were considered
to be the source of the malarial infection. All the draining activity -which was made on those
areas that were more ruinous due to the hydrogeological disorders- had no effect with regard
to the hygienic and health features: in some cases, the drain missing allowed the marshes
making where the Anopheles could live.
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