The Washington Post
The Secret History of the War on Cancerby Devra Davis
The War on Cancer set out to find, treat, and cure a disease. Left untouched were many of the things known to cause cancer, including tobacco, the workplace, radiation, or the global environment. Proof of how the world in which we live and work affects whether we get cancer was either overlooked or suppressed. This has been no accident. The War on Cancer was run by leaders of industries that made cancer-causing products, and sometimes also profited from drugs and technologies for finding and treating the disease. Filled with compelling personalities and never-before-revealed information, The Secret History of the War on Cancer shows how we began fighting the wrong war, with the wrong weapons, against the wrong enemies-a legacy that persists to this day. This is the gripping story of a major public health effort diverted and distorted for private gain. A portion of the profits from this book will go to support research on cancer prevention.
The Washington Post
“Davis put it together in a way that illuminates the underbelly of medical research."
"In her devastating, 20-years-in-the-making expose...Devra Davis... shows how cancer researchers, bankrolled by petrochemical and pharmaceutical companies, among others, collude in 'the science of doubt promotion.'...Davis diagnoses two of the most lethal diseases of modern society: secrecy and self-interest. This book is a dramatic plea for a cure."
“Davis’s new book, The Secret History of the War on Cancer, is a wake-up call for all those who have accepted the poisons of our age of plenty without a blink.”
“A feisty and highly accessible writer, Davis lays her cards on the table...a rattling good read and raises vital issues that remain relevant today.”
Booklist starred review
&ldquoSeveral big ACS [American Cancer Society] contributors, are heavily invested in keeping the public from becoming fully informed of the risks of myriad chemicals to which we and our children are exposed.... Money, it seems, trumps all. Treatment and cures are hefty profit generators, and it’s expensive to change or eliminate the use of potentially toxic chemicals.... Kudos to Davis for stepping up to the plate.”
The Times (Higher Education Supplement)
“The Secret History of the War on Cancer reflects the complex interaction of science, politics and society in the 20th century. I am left wondering how it will change in the 21st.”
Toronto Globe & Mail
“Easily the most important science book of the year.... Each and every chapter in this book offers an uncomfortable revelation.”
Cleveland Plain Dealer
“Davis is excellent at following the money and fearless about naming names.... With this work, Devra Davis has permanently reframed the ‘war.’ It should be required reading for those with cancer histories in their families. In other words, just about all of us.”
Cleveland Plain Dealer / Best 20 Books of 2007
“This searing book from a University of Pittsburgh epidemiologist lays out 35 years of medical greed and cowardice that left millions of Americans vulnerable to environmental and occupational cancer deaths. Countless political books attempt to influence the electorate, but this one stands out from the pack, demonstrating why money changes everything.”
New York Law Journal
“Compelling and well-written text moves from past to present to assess scores of contemporary workplace and lifestyle hazards, from cell phones to household cleansers to diet soft drinks, and makes clear that the law has been useless in protecting our health.”
New York Review of Books
“Joining this increasingly fractious debate with devastating force, Devra Davis, director of the Center for Environmental Oncology at the University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute, claims that the war “has been fighting many of the wrong battles with the wrong weapons and the wrong leaders.” She calculates that these “fundamental misdirections” have thrown away well over a million American lives. Her aim in The Secret History of the War on Cancer is to deliver nothing less than a “reckoning” of this terrible toll.”
“Davis writes with passion, driven by the conviction that premature deaths among her family members resulted from exposure to industrial toxins...a powerful call to action.”
“A detailed history of workplace and environmental carcinogens that predates Nixon's "war" on cancer in the '70s.... Fascinating reading as Davis reviews the
- Basic Books
- Publication date:
- Sold by:
- Hachette Digital, Inc.
- NOOK Book
- Sales rank:
- File size:
- 4 MB
Meet the Author
Devra Davis, Ph.D., M.P.H., is the Director of the Center for Environmental Oncology at the University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute and Professor of Epidemiology, Graduate School of Public Health. She was appointed by President Clinton to the U.S. Chemical Safety and Hazard Investigation Board in 1994 and also served as Scholar in Residence at the National Academy of Science. She works in Pittsburgh, and lives in Washington, D.C. She is married to Richard D. Morgenstern and has two children and two grandchildren.
- Washington, D.C. and Jackson, Wyoming
- Date of Birth:
- June 7, 1946
- Place of Birth:
- Washington, D.C.
- B.S., M.A., University of Pittsburgh, 1967; Ph.D., University of Chicago, 1972; M.P.H., Johns Hopkins University, 1982
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
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This book exposes the corporate greed and government protection of corporate greed that has shielded us from knowing the truth about what is causing the current epidemic of cancer. I bet someone in your family has some form of it. Few families are spared. I have it. It was my oncologist at the City of Hope who said that cancer has become an epidemic. The author has written a fascinating, fast moving, honest book that will help everyone understand how urgently we need to go 'organic' and 'green' NOW!
Brilliantly written. Devra Davis has written a book that reads like a novel but is jam-packed with interesting tidbits about the 'war on cancer.' This is not a self-help book -- it is a fascinating report of decades of science, politics, industry and medicine written in a very layman-friendly way. Deception. Intrigue. It is all here. Although lengthy, it is a quick and compelling read. Absolutely outstanding and highly recommended.