Why do we fear vaccines? Upon becoming a new mother, Eula Biss addresses a chronic condition of fear—fear of the government, the medical establishment, and what is in your child’s air, food, mattress, medicine, and vaccines. She concludes that you cannot immunize your child, or yourself, from the world. In her new book “On Immunity: An Inoculation,” Biss investigates the metaphors and myths surrounding our conception of immunity and its implications for the individual and the social body. She asks what are we more afraid of: the needle, the disease, our scientists and doctors, or each other? As she hears more and more fears about vaccines, Biss researches what they mean for her own child, her immediate community, America, and the world, both historically and in the present moment. She extends a conversation with other mothers to meditations on Voltaire’s Candide, Bram Stoker’s Dracula, Rachel Carson’s “Silent Spring,” Susan Sontag’s “AIDS and Its Metaphors,” the philosophy of Kierkegaard, and beyond. “On Immunity” shows how we are all interconnected—our bodies and our fates.