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books about Quacks and quackery
Hearing Happiness: Deafness Cures in History
University of Chicago Press, 2020
Library of Congress RF291.V57 2020 | Dewey Decimal 362.42
Weaving together lyrical history and personal memoir, Virdi powerfully examines society’s—and her own—perception of life as a deaf person in America.
At the age of four, Jaipreet Virdi’s world went silent. A severe case of meningitis left her alive but deaf, suddenly treated differently by everyone. Her deafness downplayed by society and doctors, she struggled to “pass” as hearing for most of her life. Countless cures, treatments, and technologies led to dead ends. Never quite deaf enough for the Deaf community or quite hearing enough for the “normal” majority, Virdi was stuck in aural limbo for years. It wasn’t until her thirties, exasperated by problems with new digital hearing aids, that she began to actively assert her deafness and reexamine society’s—and her own—perception of life as a deaf person in America.
Through lyrical history and personal memoir, Hearing Happiness
raises pivotal questions about deafness in American society and the endless quest for a cure. Taking us from the 1860s up to the present, Virdi combs archives and museums in order to understand the long history of curious cures: ear trumpets, violet ray apparatuses, vibrating massagers, electrotherapy machines, airplane diving, bloodletting, skull hammering, and many more. Hundreds of procedures and products have promised grand miracles but always failed to deliver a universal cure—a harmful legacy that is still present in contemporary biomedicine.
Weaving Virdi’s own experiences together with her exploration into the fascinating history of deafness cures, Hearing Happiness
is a powerful story that America needs to hear.
You've Been Had!: How the Media and Environmentalists Turned America into a Nation of Hypochondriacs
Benarde, Melvin A
Rutgers University Press, 2002
Library of Congress RA440.5.B46 2002 | Dewey Decimal 615.902
With all of the negative media about environmental threats over the last four decades, is it any wonder that most people believe disaster is just around the corner? But despite what the media would lead us to believe, annual reports from the Surgeons General show that Americans are the healthiest they have ever been, are becoming healthier and are, in fact, the healthiest people on the planet.
In You’ve Been Had!, Melvin Benarde aims to set the record straight and counteract the culture of complaint and worry with an unbiased account of the scientific facts — facts which suggest we are worried and frightened about the wrong things. Contrary to what the media would have us believe, he argues that the environmental factors that most adversely affect our health are those that are within our power to alter, such as smoking, diet, drugs, stress, guns speed, exercise, and basic safety precautions. Topics covered include: carcinogens and anti- carcinogens; dietary supplements and neutraceuticals; food safety, pasteurization and irradiation; genetically modified foods; microbial threats to health; hazardous and toxic waste; radiation and skin cancer; global warming; risk-taking; obesity, asthma, violence and longevity. Benarde also looks at the ways the media reports science and evidence-based medicine.