The Deadly Rise of Anti-science: A Scientist's Warning
Published by: Johns Hopkins University Press
Imprint: John Hopkins University
Sales Date: 2023-09-19
Published: September 2023
Imprint: John Hopkins University
Page Count: 240 Pages
Illustrations: 1 halftone, 12 line drawings
Dimensions: 5.90 x 9.10
240 Pages, 5.90 x 9.10 x 0.90 in, 1 halftone, 12 line drawings
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Dr. Peter Hotez discusses how an antivaccine movement became a dangerous political campaign promoted by elected officials and amplified by news media, causing thousands of American deaths.
During the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, one renowned scientist, in his famous bowtie, appeared daily on major news networks such as MSNBC, NPR, the BBC, and others. Dr. Peter J. Hotez often went without sleep, working around the clock to develop a nonprofit COVID-19 vaccine and to keep the public informed. During that time, he was one of the most trusted voices on the pandemic and was even nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize for his selfless work. He also became one of the main targets of anti-science rhetoric that gained traction through conservative news media.
In this eyewitness story of how the anti-vaccine movement grew into a dangerous and prominent anti-science element in American politics, Hotez describes the devastating impacts it has had on Americans' health and lives. As a scientist who has endured antagonism from anti-vaxxers and been at the forefront of both essential scientific discovery and advocacy, Hotez is uniquely qualified to tell this story. By weaving his personal experiences together with information on how the anti-vaccine movement became a tool of far-right political figures around the world, Hotez opens readers' eyes to the dangers of anti-science. He explains how anti-science became a major societal and lethal force: in the first years of the pandemic, more than 200,000 unvaccinated Americans needlessly died despite the widespread availability of COVID-19 vaccines. Even as he paints a picture of the world under a shadow of aggressive ignorance, Hotez demonstrates his innate optimism, offering solutions for how to combat science denial and save lives in the process.
Chapter 1. An Army of Patriots Turns against the Scientists
Chapter 2. Health Freedom Propaganda in America
Chapter 3. Red COVID
Chapter 4. An Anti-science Political Ecosystem
Chapter 5. A Tough Time to Be a Scientist
Chapter 6. The Authoritarian Playbook
Chapter 7. The Hardest Science Communication Ever
Chapter 8. Southern Poverty Law Center for Scientists
"The author's short, passionate polemic, dense with studies and charts, provides overwhelming evidence that scientific research benefits humanity and that vaccines are lifesavers.Supremely well-informed."
"Virologist and vaccine expert Peter Hotez has provided the definitive work on this era....[His] warning about the broader implications of Covid denial must be heeded."Arthur Caplan, Science
"Harrowing and deeply alarming.[Hotez's] analysis of the modern US anti-vaccine movement and its entanglement with the authoritarian right is astute."
"[A] powerful eyewitness account of anti-scientific activities in the USA."Naomi Oreskes, The Lancet
"[Hotez] demonstrates that 'anti-science aggression' is one of many threats humanity and our collective civilisation is facing."
"A professor of pediatrics and molecular virology at Baylor and a courageously outspoken advocate for public health, Hotez documents how agitators on the extreme right have graduated from trying to sow mistrust in science to targeting individual scientists such as himself.The heart of his book is a call for government agencies and professional organizations to wage an aggressive battle against anti-vaccination and anti-science propaganda."Michael Hiltzik, Los Angeles Times
"In this era when truth, evidence and science are, to put it bluntly, under attack, it is important that we share lessons and provide support in our health services and policy research community....[Dr. Hotez] advocates for organized supports from scientific organizations and associations to equip and protect scientists who are working to defend science."Maggie Keresteci, CAHSPR
- Non-Obvious Book Awards