Book-Review-Anti-Vaxxers
In the 2020 book, “Anti-Vaxxers: How to Challenge a Misinformed Movement,” author Jonathan Berman tries to disprove misinformation of anti-vaccine movements in history. Photo courtesy of The MIT Press

Author highlights history of anti-vaccination movement

Since its outbreak in China’s Wuhan late 2019, the novel coronavirus has infected around 2.4 billion people. It also claimed the lives of roughly 5 million, according to the World Health Organization on Oct. 14.

The human being managed to make quite a few kinds of vaccines against the virus, but many opt not to receive shots. For one, the rate of fully vaccinated people is just 57 percent in the United States, although the country secured enough doses of advanced vaccines.

The 2020 book, “Anti-Vaxxers: How to Challenge a Misinformed Movement,” delves into the reason why some people are reluctant to be vaccinated.

Although most of the book was written before the onset of the COVID-19, it appears to be relevant to today’s readers wary about the anti-vaccination movement in many countries.

“Vaccines have significantly reduced the burden of human suffering,” wrote author Jonathan Berman, a scientist and science educator.

“Their story I one of the great tales of human progress and our ability to develop tools and knowledge that allow us to improve our quality of life. Nevertheless, some people oppose vaccination vehemently.”

After offering detailed background information on vaccines and their mechanism, Berman tries to refute anti-vaccination movements by examining the propagation of anti-vax claims.

Included in his targets are the “misinformed claim” that links some vaccines to late-onset autism and conspiracy theories circulating through social networking sites.

In other words, the author strives to provide a counterpoint to some of the misinformation of anti-vaxxers.

“It (vaccination) is but one component of the overall fight against disease, but it is an important one, and one that almost anyone can participate in even without a lab or a medical license,” Berman said.

“The victory of truth over lies and of information over disinformation is not a foregone conclusion,” he added, urging voters to pick politicians who understand the value of science.

The publisher studied Korean history in Seoul and management of business administration in the United Kingdom. He has 20-year experiences in the media business. Kim can be reached at voc200@gmail.com or 82-2-6956-6698.