Famine and Disease in the Ottoman Empire during WWI

Black and white photograph of children walking on a street. A woman stands with the group.

Through explorations of primary and secondary sources detailing the famine and disease that spread through the Ottoman Empire, with focus on Mount Lebanon, students will explore the ways civilian populations are affected by war, how famine and disease are interconnected, and the lasting effects of public health crises on a population. Afterwards, students will design a movie poster that tells the honest story of WWI at home for so many across the globe.

Essential questions:

  • Why did the Ottoman Empire enter WWI?
  • To what extent can a war impact civilians and other vulnerable populations that do not partake in the conflict?
  • How can war trigger public health crises?
  • How can the effects of disease and famine hurt a population decades after the original event subsides?