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Control: The Dark History and Troubling Present of Eugenics

Adam Rutherford

4 Reviews

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Social discrimination & inequality, History of science, Genetics (non-medical), Human biology

A short, highly directed guide to an area of science that is little understood but increasingly part of public discourse by the Sunday Times bestselling author of HOW TO ARGUE WITH A RACIST

How did an obscure academic idea pave the way to the Holocaust within just fifty years?
Why does eugenics still loom large in the 21st century, despite its genocidal past?
Did eugenics work? Could it work? Or was it always a pseudoscientific fantasy?

Throughout history, people have sought to reduce suffering, eliminate disease and enhance desirable qualities in their children. In the Victorian era eugenics, a full-blooded attempt to impose control over unruly biology, began to grow among the powerful and quickly spread to dozens of countries around the world. But these ideas are not merely historical: today, with new gene editing techniques, conversations are happening about tinkering with the DNA of our unborn children to make them smarter, fitter, stronger. Deeply steeped in contemporary genetics, CONTROL offers a vital account of one of the defining - and most destructive - ideas of the twentieth century.

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Praise for Control: The Dark History and Troubling Present of Eugenics

  • A short, sharp, illuminating overview of the science, politics, uses and abuses of human gene editing - OBSERVER, Book of the Week

  • Rutherford's swift, well-written account of these fascinating scientific and moral issues is well worth a read - THE TIMES, Book of the Week

  • Persuasive, sensible and ultimately reassuring, but not complacent . . . this book is a shot worth having - GUARDIAN, Book of the Day

  • Fizzy and pugnacious . . . brilliant . . . A fierce and funny broadside against eugenics and its admirers - SUNDAY TELEGRAPH

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A Brief History of Everyone Who Ever Lived | Introduction by author Adam Rutherford

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A Brief History of Everyone Who Ever Lived | Introduction by author Adam Rutherford

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Adam Rutherford

Dr Adam Rutherford is a scientist, writer and broadcaster. He has written and presented award-winning series and programmes for the BBC, including Radio 4's Inside Science and The Curious Cases of Rutherford & Fry with Dr Hannah Fry. He is the author of Creation, shortlisted for the Wellcome Trust Prize, A Brief History of Everyone Who Ever Lived, The Book of Humans, the Sunday Times bestselling How to Argue With a Racist and the co-author of Rutherford and Fry's Complete Guide to Absolutely Everything (Abridged).

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