Silent Victories: The History and Practice of Public Health in Twentieth-Century America

Hardcover | November 14, 2006

EditorJohn W. Ward, Christian Warren

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Americans' health improved dramatically over the twentieth century. Public health programs for disease and injury prevention were responsible for much of this advance. Over the century, America's public health system grew dramatically, employing science and political authority in response toan increasing array of health problems. As the disease burden of the old scourges of infection, perinatal mortality, and dietary deficiencies began to lift, public health's mandate expanded to take on new health threats, such as those resulting from a changing workplace, the rise of the automobile,and chronic and complex conditions caused by smoking, diet and other lifestyle and environmental factors. Public health measures almost always occur on contested ground; accordingly, controversies and recriminations over past failures often persist. In contrast, public health's many successes, eventhe imperfect ones, become part of the fabric of everyday life, a fact already apparent early in the last century, when C.E.A. Winslow reminded his peers that the lives saved and healthy years extended were the "silent victories" of public health. In its exploration of ten major public health issuesaddressed in the 20th century, Silent Victories takes a unique approach: for each issue, leading scientists in the field trace the discoveries, practices and programs that reduced morbidity and mortality from disease and injury, and an accompanying chapter by a historian or social scientisthighlights key moments or conflicts that shaped public health action on that issue. The book concludes with a look toward the challenges public health must face in the future. Silent Victories reveals the lessons of history in a format designed to appeal to students, health professionals and thepublic seeking to understand how public health advanced the country's health in the 20th century, and the challenges to protecting health in the future.

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Americans' health improved dramatically over the twentieth century. Public health programs for disease and injury prevention were responsible for much of this advance. Over the century, America's public health system grew dramatically, employing science and political authority in response toan increasing array of health problems. As ...

John W. Ward is at Center for Disease Control. Christian Warren is at University of Georgia.

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Paperback|Dec 15 2010

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Format:HardcoverDimensions:512 pages, 6.42 × 9.29 × 1.3 inPublished:November 14, 2006Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0195150694

ISBN - 13:9780195150698

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Table of Contents

Section 1--Control of Infectious Diseases. 1. Stephen Ostroff, Peter Drotman, Alexandra M. Levitt: Control of Infectious Diseases--A 20th Century Public Health Achievement2. Robert V. Tauxe, Emilio J. Esteban: Advances in Food Safety to Prevention Foodborne Diseases in the United States3. Jill E. Cooper: A Brief Romance with Magic Bullets: Rene' Dubos at the Dawn of the Antibiotic EraSection 2--Control of Disease Through Vaccination. 4. Walter Orenstein, Alan R. Hinman: A Shot at Protection: Immunizations Against Infectious Disease5. Naomi Rogers: Polio Can Be Conquered: Science and Health Propaganda in the United States from Polio Polly to Jonas SalkSection 3--Maternal and Infant Health. 6. Milton Kotelchuck: Safe Mothers, Healthy Babies: Reproductive Health in the 20th Century7. Jacqueline H. Wolf: Pioneering Efforts to Decrease Infant and Maternal MortalitySection 4--Nutrition. 8. Richard D. Semba: The Impact of Improved Nutrition on Disease Prevention9. Rima D. Apple: The More Things Change, ...: A Historical Perspective on the Debate over Vitamin Advertising in the United StatesSection 5--Occupational Health. 10. Phillip Landrigan, Anthony Robbins: Safer, Healthier Worker: Advances in Occupational Disease and Injury Prevention11. Christopher Sellers: A Prejudice that May Cloud the Mentality: The Making of Objectivity in Early Twentieth-Century Occupational Health (A study of the Progressive Era origins of occupational medicine)Section 6--Family Planning. 12. Jacqueline E. Darroch: Family Planning: A Century of Change13. Johanna Schoen: Teaching Birth Control on Tobacco Road and Mill Village Alley: Race, Class, and Birth Control in Public HealthSection 7--Oral and Dental Health: Fluoridation. 14. Brian A. Burt, Scott L. Tomar: Changing the Face of America: Water Fluoridation and Oral Health15. Gretchen Ann Reilly: The Task is a Political One: The Promotion of FluoridationSection 8--Vehicular Safety. 16. David Sleet, Ann Dellinger, Bruce Jones: Drivers, Wheels and Roads: Motor Vehicle Safety in the 20th Century17. Daniel M. Albert: The Nut Behind the Wheel: Shifting Responsibilities for Traffic Safety Since 1895Section 9--Cardiovascular Disease. 18. Kurt Greenlund, Wayne H. Giles, Nora L. Keenan, Ann Marie Malarcher, Zhi Jie Zheng, Michele L. Casper, Gregory W. Heath, Janet B. Croft: Heart Disease and Stroke Mortality in the 20th Century19. Karin Garrety: Dietary Policy, Controversy and Proof: Doing Something Versus Waiting for the Definitive EvidenceSection 10--Tobacco and Disease Prevention. 20. Michael Eriksen, Lawrence Green, Corinne Husten, Linda Pederson, Terry Pechacek: Thank You for Not Smoking: The Public Health Response to Tobacco Related Mortality in the United States21. Allen M. Brandt: The First Surgeon Generals Report on Tobacco: Science and the State in the New Age of Chronic DiseaseSection 11--Concluding Chapter. 22. Jeffrey P. Koplan, Stephen B. Thacker: Public Health at the Dawn of the 21st Century

Editorial Reviews

"John Ward and Christian Warren and their 42 contributors have produced a very good book about the history and practice of public health in the United States with an unusual and insightful approach...the book provides well-documented content and context in a useful way and with an enjoyablepresentation. Each area is well-worth reading."--Inquiry