by Laurie Halse Anderson
Fever, 1793 Foreignness and the 'Other' Quotes
How we cite our quotes: Citations follow this format: (Chapter.Paragraph)
"Don't be vile, Jeannine," snapped her mother. "Those filthy refugees and creatures who live in the crowded hovels by the river, they're always sick with something. But it is a gross injustice that my gala should suffer because the lower class falls ill. Don't you agree, Lucille?" (7.36)
The Ogilvies are also blaming the refugee community for the fever outbreak. While new entrants into Philadelphia did carry the disease, it was mosquitoes, not people, who were actually responsible for spreading it. Notice how Mrs. Ogilvie dehumanizes the foreign population, calling them "filthy."
"Where are you going?" I asked. "Grandfather and I could run any errand you need."
"Not this errand, you couldn't." Eliza reached for her pretty straw hat. "The Free African Society is having a meeting about the fever. It should prove a lively gathering. I'll return in time for supper." (8.20-8.21)
Unlike the refugee population, the Free African Society is a group that's more closely integrated and accepted in Philadelphia. The Society was an actual organization founded by the Reverend Richard Allen in the eighteenth century.
"You'll hear folks say that Dr. Rush is a hero for saving folks with his purges and blood letting. But I've seen different. It's these French doctors here that know how to cure the fever. I don't care if Dr. Rush did sign the Declaration of Independence. I wouldn't let him and his knives near me." (14.53)
While most people have embraced the cures of Dr. Rush, Mrs. Flagg and the French doctors at Bush Hill strongly disagree with his practices. What does the Declaration of Independence have to do with medical science? How does Dr. Rush's nationality and status as an American give him credit with others?