This book covers the history of twelve important diseases and addresses public health responses and societal upheavals. - Chronicles the ways disease outbreaks shaped traditions and institutions of Western civilization. - Explains the effects, causes, and outcomes from past epidemics. - Describes a dozen diseases to show how disease control either was achieved or failed. - Makes clear the interrelationship between diseases and history. - Presents material in a compelling, clear, and jargon-free prose for a wide audience. - Provides a picture of the best practices for dealing with disease outbreaks.