Hardcover: 340 pages
Publisher: Potomac Books; 1 edition (January 1, 2012)
Product Dimensions: 6.3 x 1.3 x 9.1 inches
Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
Best Sellers Rank: #659,711 in Books (See Top 100 in Books) #98 in Books > Health, Fitness & Dieting > Diseases & Physical Ailments > AIDS #127 in Books > Medical Books > Medicine > Internal Medicine > Pathology > Diseases > AIDS & HIV #427 in Books > Medical Books > Administration & Medicine Economics > Health Policy
In AIDS at 30, Harden has written a masterful history of the first three decades of AIDS. Actually, she traces the emergence of HIV even further back to the early decades of the 20th Century in Africa where clear signs of HIV infection were evident. More solid evidence is found in the 1970s when researchers went back to examine stored blood samples of those whose deaths fit the profile of infection with HIV. It's clear HIV has been with us for about a century, but it escaped the confines of Africa only in the past 50 years or so, and it didn't begin reaching epidemic status until the 1980s.Harden presents her text as one for the general reader, and indeed her presentation is lucid and easily comprehended. As I began reading the first chapter I feared I was taking up a text that was *too* simplistic and aimed for a reader with no science background whatsoever. However, the pace picks up quickly, and while the writing remains clear and straightforward, this reader was thoroughly engaged with the content throughout the remainder of the text. It is a fascinating read.I was impressed with the thoroughness and comprehensiveness of her text, as well as its incisiveness. Her text is about as lengthy as Jonathan Engel's The Epidemic, but Harden covers an additional ten years in the same amount of space, and even where the chronology overlaps, Harden supplies more information than Engel did.Harden utilizes a much broader array of sources for her study rather than simply regurgitating articles from The New York Times and Newsweek as Engel did. To be fair, she may have an advantage over Engel because she is employed by the National Institutes of Health as a historian, and therefore she has access to oral histories which may not have been available to Engel.
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