How Fear and Fantasy Have Fueled Epidemics From the Black Death to Avian FluBook - 2009
Describes how fears over epidemics in the developed world have shaped the medical, moral, and political landscapes, arguing that a reexamination of how societies treat epidemic anxiety is needed.
Alcabes examines epidemics through history to show how they reflect the particular social and cultural anxieties of their times. From Typhoid Mary to bioterrorism, as new outbreaks are unleashed or imagined, new fears surface, new enemies are born, and new behaviors emerge. Dread dissects the fascinating story of the imagined epidemic: the one that we think is happening, or might happen; the one that disguises moral judgments and political agendas, the one that ultimately expresses our deepest fears.