Elinor Accampo is professor of history at the University of Southern California. Her most recent publications include Blessed Motherhood, Bitter Fruit: Nelly Roussel and the Politics of Female Pain in Third Republic France (2006) and, with Christopher Forth, Confronting Modernity in Fin-de-Siècle France(2010). She is working on a comparative study of the 1918 flu pandemic and its intersection with World War I, which inspired her interest in how disasters are viewed historically. She thanks Jeffrey H. Jackson for having originated and inspired this special issue and Rachel Fuchs for helping carry it through.
Jeffrey H. Jackson is associate professor of history and director of the Environmental Studies and Sciences program at Rhodes College. His most recent book is Paris under Water: How the City of Light Survived the Great Flood of 1910 (2010). He is coediting a volume on café culture with W. Scott Haine and Leona Rittner, tentatively titled The Thinking Space: The Café as a Cultural Institution in Paris, Italy, and Vienna.