2011-2013 Catalog (without addenda) 
    
    Aug 14, 2020  
2011-2013 Catalog (without addenda) [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Add to Portfolio (opens a new window)

STS 2253/W Biology and Society

3 Credits
This course explores the relationship between the biological sciences and society from Enlightenment France to the Human Genome Project and biotechnology in the United States. Ever since the Enlightenment, the study of nature has played an ever-increasing role in shaping social issues. For example, we shall exam the roles played by gender, social class, and natural theology in eighteenth-century classifications of plants and animals. We shall also investigate how biologists and anthropologists drew upon rather ambiguous notions of nature to classify humans into races. We shall then trace Darwin’s theory of evolution and how it shaped, and was shaped by, socio-economic, political, and religious views. We shall discuss the depressing history of eugenics in Britain and the U.S. We shall conclude by provocatively asking if there is a link between eugenics and the Human Genome Project. We shall also see how economics, politics, and religion have shaped biotechnology and human-embryonic-stemcell research. The student is invited to think about the way in which debates concerning “nature versus nurture” have been framed historically, in order to understand current controversies over that distinction.

Prerequisite(s): EW 1023  or EN 1233W  or EN 1203H .
Note: Satisfies a Humanities and Social Sciences Elective.



Add to Portfolio (opens a new window)