Pox Americana Book Review Essay

820 WordsDec 26, 20064 Pages
Smallpox is an extremely deadly disease which, in one point in time, was the most feared disease on the planet. In the book Pox Americana, Elizabeth A. Fenn writes about the encounter with the deadly disease in the 1770's to the 1780's. Her book was first published in 2001 in New York City, where she originally wrote it. Her book contains just under 400 words that explain the disease, some of the first encounters with it, who and where it affected people, and how they got the epidemic under control. Pox Americana is a very informative book that teaches the reader various things. The tendency of Pox Americana is to inform the reader that the smallpox epidemic was not just the common cold, but rather it was a deadly disease that affected…show more content…
The book either presents clear, honest facts, or states that they are merely estimates. The story consists of informing the reader, not arguing a point or discussing a controversial topic. It is merely informing the reader of a once common disease that has come and gone. One of my main objections that I have with this book is that it doesn't present enough of a point of view. It is sort of like a bad research paper, without an opinion, it is simply an organized sheet of facts. Although I wouldn't call this book terrible or a failure, I would call it incomplete. It gives the feeling of reading an encyclopedia, but with more interesting details. It is understandable to have a weak opinion in an informational book, but no opinion at all is scarcely acceptable. An additional objection that I had for this book was that in some parts, it failed to narrow in on where the setting was. At some points, it would simply state an island, or maybe just a city name. As readers, we cannot be expected to know where these places are or what country they are in. As an author, she should have clarified these details better. By reading Pox Americana, my conception of the historical period circa 1780 has changed immensely. Before reading this book, when somebody would mention that period of time, I would automatically think about the early stages of government, diseases and illnesses never came up in my mind. Now, the book has informed me of far more things to think about. Instead of

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