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Pandemics and Pop Culture: Fiction or Reality? | Past Forward | American Experience | PBS

American Experience presents a virtual PAST FORWARD conversation comparing real life pandemics and their pop culture analogues. This conversation is inspired in part by their film, Plague at the Golden Gate, now streaming.

Panelists will explore the popularity of books, movies and shows about viruses and pandemics, and connect what we see on the screen to how scientists and doctors deal with outbreaks in real life. They’ll delve into the technology of virus hunting–both in real life and in the movies, examine the political and social norms reflected in the media and in reality, and draw comparisons between pandemics of the past and the present.

Featured guest:

Ian Lipkin – Professor of epidemiology, pathology and neurology, and Director of the Center for Infection and Immunity at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health, and scientific advisor on the 2011 film, Contagion.

The conversation will be moderated by Marilyn Chase, former health reporter for The Wall Street Journal, and the author of The Barbary Plague: The Black Death in Victorian San Francisco (Random House)

Learn more about American Experience:

Watch “Plague at the Golden Gate”:

Watch other Past Forward conversations: