Infectious diseases have had a major impact on human populations throughout history, as exemplified by the COVID-19 pandemic we are currently experiencing. Over the span of six classes, we will establish a baseline understanding of disease-causing “germs”—the viruses, bacteria, and more that make humans sick. We will delve into specifics of COVID-19, its predecessor SARS, and influenza, as well as diseases spread by lice, fleas, and rats. Poxes including smallpox, syphilis, and "childhood diseases," plus flash-bang outbreaks like Ebola will be explored. Slow-burning epidemics like tuberculosis will be examined as will HIV/AIDS and malaria—the “big three” infectious disease killers in the world today. Classes will be interactive and highlight cultural context using video recordings, music, and other arts, while being technically accurate and content rich. | Lecture + Q&A; Listening to audio recordings; Viewing videos.