This course surveys the history of human societies’ efforts to look after (or ignore) the needs of the most vulnerable among them. It has a global reach and attempts to demonstrate changes from early human societies to the present in the ways and the extent to which different societies across the globe have been willing to extend aid to various groups of vulnerable people.
Alvin Finkel was a full professor of History at Athabasca University where he taught for 36 years. He has published 13 books and many articles. His most recent book, upon which this course is based, is Compassion: A Global History of Social Policy.