the social life of dna race reparations and reconciliation after the genome

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The Social Life Of Dna

Author : Alondra Nelson
ISBN : 9780807033012
Genre : African Americans
File Size : 88. 90 MB
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The unexpected story of how genetic testing is affecting race in America We know DNA is a master key that unlocks medical and forensic secrets, but its genealogical life is both revelatory and endlessly fascinating. Tracing genealogy is now the second-most popular hobby amongst Americans, as well as the second-most visited online category. This billion-dollar industry has spawned popular television shows, websites, and Internet communities, and a booming heritage tourism circuit. The tsunami of interest in genetic ancestry tracing from the African American community has been especially overwhelming. In The Social Life of DNA, Alondra Nelson takes us on an unprecedented journey into how the double helix has wound its way into the heart of the most urgent contemporary social issues around race. For over a decade, Nelson has deeply studied this phenomenon. Artfully weaving together keenly observed interactions with root-seekers alongside illuminating historical details and revealing personal narrative, she shows that genetic genealogy is a new tool for addressing old and enduring issues. In The Social Life of DNA, she explains how these cutting-edge DNA-based techniques are being used in myriad ways, including grappling with the unfinished business of slavery: to foster reconciliation, to establish ties with African ancestral homelands, to rethink and sometimes alter citizenship, and to make legal claims for slavery reparations specifically based on ancestry. Nelson incisively shows that DNA is a portal to the past that yields insight for the present and future, shining a light on social traumas and historical injustices that still resonate today. Science can be a crucial ally to activism to spur social change and transform twenty-first-century racial politics. But Nelson warns her readers to be discerning: for the social repair we seek can't be found in even the most sophisticated science. Engrossing and highly original, The Social Life of DNA is a must-read for anyone interested in race, science, history and how our reckoning with the past may help us to chart a more just course for tomorrow.

Genetics And The Unsettled Past

Author : Keith Wailoo
ISBN : 9780813553368
Genre : Medical
File Size : 47. 96 MB
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Our genetic markers have come to be regarded as portals to the past. Analysis of these markers is increasingly used to tell the story of human migration; to investigate and judge issues of social membership and kinship; to rewrite history and collective memory; to right past wrongs and to arbitrate legal claims and human rights controversies; and to open new thinking about health and well-being. At the same time, in many societies genetic evidence is being called upon to perform a kind of racially charged cultural work: to repair the racial past and to transform scholarly and popular opinion about the “nature” of identity in the present. Genetics and the Unsettled Past considers the alignment of genetic science with commercial genealogy, with legal and forensic developments, and with pharmaceutical innovation to examine how these trends lend renewed authority to biological understandings of race and history. This unique collection brings together scholars from a wide range of disciplines—biology, history, cultural studies, law, medicine, anthropology, ethnic studies, sociology—to explore the emerging and often contested connections among race, DNA, and history. Written for a general audience, the book’s essays touch upon a variety of topics, including the rise and implications of DNA in genealogy, law, and other fields; the cultural and political uses and misuses of genetic information; the way in which DNA testing is reshaping understandings of group identity for French Canadians, Native Americans, South Africans, and many others within and across cultural and national boundaries; and the sweeping implications of genetics for society today.

The Genealogical Science

Author : Nadia Abu El-Haj
ISBN : 9780226201405
Genre : History
File Size : 54. 15 MB
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The Genealogical Science analyzes the scientific work and social implications of the flourishing field of genetic history. A biological discipline that relies on genetic data in order to reconstruct the geographic origins of contemporary populations—their histories of migration and genealogical connections to other present-day groups—this historical science is garnering ever more credibility and social reach, in large part due to a growing industry in ancestry testing. In this book, Nadia Abu El-Haj examines genetic history’s working assumptions about culture and nature, identity and biology, and the individual and the collective. Through the example of the study of Jewish origins, she explores novel cultural and political practices that are emerging as genetic history’s claims and “facts” circulate in the public domain and illustrates how this historical science is intrinsically entangled with cultural imaginations and political commitments. Chronicling late-nineteenth- to mid-twentieth-century understandings of race, nature, and culture, she identifies continuities and shifts in scientific claims, institutional contexts, and political worlds in order to show how the meanings of biological difference have changed over time. In so doing she gives an account of how and why it is that genetic history is so socially felicitous today and elucidates the range of understandings of the self, individual and collective, this scientific field is making possible. More specifically, through her focus on the history of projects of Jewish self-fashioning that have taken place on the terrain of the biological sciences, The Genealogical Science analyzes genetic history as the latest iteration of a cultural and political practice now over a century old.

Revisiting Race In A Genomic Age

Author : Barbara A. Koenig
ISBN : 9780813543246
Genre : Science
File Size : 65. 18 MB
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Revisting Race in the Genomic Age takes a cutting-edge look at emerging genetic technologies and their impact on current conceptions of race and human identity. Essays will explore genomic science as an important anthropological and sociological case in the development of race theory as well as examine the social, ethical, and legal implications of emerging genomic technologies. Philosophers join anthropologists and scientists working in human genetic variation research to make this a truly interdisciplinary work. Following the introduction, essays in section one will present the conceptual frameworks on race as related to human genetic variation research. The heart of the book is made of up three sections focusing on three significant themes in this emerging cross-disciplinary engagement. Sections are "Race-targeted Research and Therapeutics," "Genetic Ancestry, Identity, and Group Membership," and "Race and Genetics in Public Discourse."

Race Decoded

Author : Catherine Bliss
ISBN : 9780804782050
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 82. 20 MB
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In 2000, with the success of the Human Genome Project, scientists declared the death of race in biology and medicine. But within five years, many of these same scientists had reversed course and embarked upon a new hunt for the biological meaning of race. Drawing on personal interviews and life stories, Race Decoded takes us into the world of elite genome scientists—including Francis Collins, director of the NIH; Craig Venter, the first person to create a synthetic genome; and Spencer Wells, National Geographic Society explorer-in-residence, among others—to show how and why they are formulating new ways of thinking about race. In this original exploration, Catherine Bliss reveals a paradigm shift, both at the level of science and society, from colorblindness to racial consciousness. Scientists have been fighting older understandings of race in biology while simultaneously promoting a new grand-scale program of minority inclusion. In selecting research topics or considering research design, scientists routinely draw upon personal experience of race to push the public to think about race as a biosocial entity, and even those of the most privileged racial and social backgrounds incorporate identity politics in the scientific process. Though individual scientists may view their positions differently—whether as a black civil rights activist or a white bench scientist—all stakeholders in the scientific debates are drawing on memories of racial discrimination to fashion a science-based activism to fight for social justice.

Body And Soul

Author : Alondra Nelson
ISBN : 0816676496
Genre : History
File Size : 51. 96 MB
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Alondra Nelson recovers a lesser-known aspect of The Black Panther Party's broader struggle for social justice: health care. Nelson argues that the Party's focus on health care was practical and ideological and that their understanding of health as a basic human right and its engagement with the social implications of genetics anticipated current debates about the politics of health and race.

Promising Genomics

Author : Mike Fortun
ISBN : 0520942612
Genre : Medical
File Size : 80. 63 MB
Format : PDF
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Part detective story, part exposé, and part travelogue, Promising Genomics investigates one of the signature biotech stories of our time and, in so doing, opens a window onto the high-speed, high-tech, and high-finance world of genome science. In a luminous account, Mike Fortun investigates how deCODE Genetics, in Iceland, became one of the wealthiest companies of its kind, as well as one of the most scandalous, with its plan to use the genes and medical records of the entire Icelandic population for scientific research. Delving into the poetry of W. H. Auden, the novels of Halldór Laxness, and the perils of Keiko the killer whale, Fortun maps the contemporary genomics landscape at a time when we must begin to ask questions about what "life" is made of in the age of DNA, databases, and derivatives trading.

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