America's Obsession With Drugs

May 20, 2019

In a new book, science writer Thomas Hager recounts the fascinating backstories of ten drugs that have changed the way we live. Behind the search for new and better medicines there’s always been this hope for an effective drug without any risk.

In a new book, science writer Thomas Hager recounts the fascinating backstories of ten drugs that have changed the way we live. Few remember the woman who discovered the smallpox vaccine. Then there was that first demonstration of Viagra, onstage, before a crowd of hundreds. Behind the search for new and better medicines there’s always been this hope for a magic bullet, an effective drug without any risk. Hager joins us to explore what he calls a “dance between the lab, the pill, and the body.”

Thomas Hager teaches journalism and communication at the University of Oregon. He's written several books on the history of medicine and science. His latest is Ten Drugs: How Plants, Powders, and Pills Have Shaped the History of Medicine [Indie bookstores|Amazon|Audible].