ABC-CLIO/Greenwood - Reference

Vaccination and Its Critics

A Documentary and Reference Guide

by Lisa Rosner


Public outcry about vaccines and heated debates about their use began as early as the 1900s.

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Cover image for Vaccination and Its Critics

February 2017


Pages 311
Volumes 1
Size 8 1/2x11
Topics Current Events and Issues/Health and Medicine
  Health & Wellness/Public Health

This authoritative and unbiased narrative—supported by 50 primary source documents—follows the history of vaccination, highlighting essential medical achievements and ongoing controversies.

This timely work provides a comprehensive overview of the scientific breakthrough known as vaccination and the controversy surrounding its opposition. A timeline of discoveries trace the medical and societal progression of vaccines from the early development of this medical preventive to the eradication of epidemics and the present-day discussion about its role in autism. The content presents compelling parallels across different time periods to reflect the ongoing concerns that have persisted throughout history regarding vaccination.

Author Lisa Rosner provides a sweeping overview of the topic, covering the development of modern vaccines and practices, laws governing the distribution of vaccines, patients' rights, consumer advocacy, and vaccination disasters. Throughout the volume, primary source documents present the perspectives of researchers, public health specialists, physicians, patients, consumer advocates, and government officials, helping to illuminate the past, present, and future of vaccines on a global level.


  • Provides readers with accurate, unbiased accounts of medical breakthroughs and critics
  • Examines vaccination controversies in a historical and global perspective
  • Traces compelling parallels between past anti-vaccination movements and those of the present day
  • Features essential primary documents that highlight historic turning points in vaccine research and implementation
  • Includes the most up-to-date scientific research on vaccines
Author Info

Lisa Rosner is distinguished professor of history at Stockton University. Her published works include ABC-CLIO's Chronologies of Science: From Stonehenge to the Human Genome Project as well as The Anatomy Murders: Being the True and Spectacular History of Edinburgh's Notorious Burke and Hare and of the Man of Science Who Abetted Them in the Commission of Their Most Heinous Crimes. She is currently developing a 3D digital strategy game, The Pox Hunter, which recreates the early history of smallpox vaccination. Rosner has received awards from the National Endowment for the Humanities, the American Philosophical Society, and the Chemical Heritage Foundation. She holds a bachelor's degree from Princeton University and a doctorate from Johns Hopkins University.



"This well-written book by historian Rosner offers a selection of historical documents covering the history of vaccination from its earliest manifestations to the present day. . . . Her work is sure to interest history of medicine buffs. Summing Up: Highly recommended. High school through undergraduate students; general readers."—Choice

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