Book Description: Diseases have significantly shaped the course of the world's history. From the fourteenth-century plague to HIV/AIDS today, diseases have fundamentally altered the shape of society, politics, and culture. In a sweeping, thoughtful account, "Twelve Diseases That Changed Our World" considers the history of twelve important diseases: their impact, their consequences, their costs, and the lessons learned. Examining hemophilia, blight, tuberculosis, cholera, smallpox, bubonic plague, influenza, malaria, yellow fever, and syphilis, this book not only covers the diseases' histories but also addresses public health responses and societal upheavals. Historical perspectives on these diseases will be indispensable for a better understanding of how we and our forbearers survived the onslaught of "plagues" and how we might avoid their devastating consequences in the future. Crucial to this examination is exploring how past experience can help us to deal effectively with "coming plagues." Whether attempts to control outbreaks were successful or not, lessons can be learned that are crucial for disease containment today. Most significantly, this book explains the lessons learned from attempts to contain past disease outbreaks and how that knowledge can be utilized in the future. Despite the challenges that a major epidemic presents, "Twelve Diseases That Changed Our World" also details various past successes in which diseases were brought under control and social disorder was minimized.