Current Weather
The Spy FM

Dr. Seuss On Malaria: ‘This Is Ann … She Drinks Blood’

Filed by KOSU News in Art & Life.
August 20, 2012

Before he cooked up green eggs or taught us to count colorful fish, Dr. Seuss was a captain in the U.S. Army. And during World War II, the author and illustrator, whose given name was Theodor Geisel, spent a few years creating training films and pamphlets for the troops.

One of Geisel’s Army cartoons was a booklet aimed at preventing malaria outbreaks among GIs by urging them to use nets and keep covered up.

In 1943, Germany blocked the Allies’ supply of the anti-malaria drug quinine. So Geisel created a booklet explaining to the troops how to avoid harmful encounters with “blood-thirsty Ann,” the character he created to represent Anopheles, the genus of the mosquitoes that transmit the disease:

“This is Ann … she drinks blood! Her full name is Anopheles Mosquito and she’s dying to meet you!

“Ann moves around at night (a real party gal) and she’s got a thirst. No whiskey, gin, beer or rum coke for Ann … she drinks G.I. blood. She jabs that beak of hers in like a drill and sucks up the juice … then the poor G.I. is going to feel awful in about eight or fourteen days … because he is going to have malaria!”

Geisel also drew a map of the malaria epidemic around the world, which was printed on the back of a poster distributed by the U.S. War Department to disseminate news to troops.

These gems from Geisel’s archive bubbled up on the Contagion blog today to mark the anniversary of Ronald Ross’s discovery of the malarial parasite. [Copyright 2012 National Public Radio]

Leave a Reply

9PM to 5AM The Spy

The Spy

An eclectic mix of the Spy's library of more than 10,000 songs curated by Ferris O'Brien.

Listen Live Now!

Upcoming Events in your area (Submit your event today!)

Streaming audio and podcasts

Stream KOSU on your smartphone

Phone Streaming

SmartPhone listening options on this page are intended for many iPhones, Blackberries, etc. with low-cost software applications available to listen to our full-time web streams, both News on KOSU-1 and Classical on KOSU-2.

Learn more about our complete range of streaming services

We're perfecting the patient experience - Stillwater Medical Center