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Genetics film & discussion
University of Tennessee Libraries to host second session, “Genetics,” of its Research Revolution Video Discussion Series

Knoxville, TN. – The University of Tennessee Libraries will screen Our Genes, Our Choices: Who Gets to Know?, an award-winning documentary film that which moderator Arthur Miller, professor at Harvard Law School, leads an intense, provocative and often humorous discussion that reveals the far-reaching implications of genetic testing.

As scientific researchers work to uncover what specific genetic sequences of the human genome mean, the largest challenge may be the one facing us - how to live with genetic information. Should a man with a family history of cancer get tested for genetic markers that could indicate his risk for developing cancer? Will that knowledge add to or detract from his quality of life? Who would you want to know your personal genetic profile? Genetic testing can already reveal a predisposition to diseases like breast cancer and Alzheimer's, and genetic science offers the hope of treatment and cures. But how will we handle what scientists are learning?

This is the third of a FREE six-part viewing, reading and discussion series called “Research Revolution: Science and The Shaping of Modern Life.” The University of Tennessee Libraries has been selected to participate in the project organized by National Video Resources (NVR) in partnership with the American Library Association (ALA) Public Programs Office. The project is funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF) and supported locally by Knox County Public Library, Preston Medical Library, and the UT Science Forum.

The “Research Revolution” invites the public to discuss and discover the impact of research-based science and technological “progress” on everyday life. The first program focusing on The Atomic Age was held on Tuesday, January 27, 2004 at 7:00 PM. Other sessions include Robotics (2/10/04), Genetics (2/24/04), Forensics (3/9/04), Global Warming (3/23/04) and Biodiversity (4/6/04). All programs will be held at 7:00 PM at Pendergrass Agriculture and Veterinary Medicine Library. For details and directions, please visit http://www.lib.utk.edu/mediacenter/revolution or contact Troy Davis at 865-974-6396, and/or troydavis@utk.edu.

Dr. Mark Littmann, Julia G. and Alfred G. Hill Chair of Excellence in Science, Technology and Medical Writing, will lead a discussion of each session’s award winning documentary film. Dr. Littmann coordinates the Science Communication Program and teaches science writing and other courses for the School of Journalism and Electronic Media. Dr. Littmann’s most recent books are The Heavens on Fire: The Great Leonid Meteor Storms and Totality: Eclipses of the Sun.

“During our last session, we screened an artful documentary film that, through a rich display of visual texture and poignant interviews seemed to ask: is the so-called line between human and machine a factual barrier or more like a porous invention?,” said Troy Davis, Media Services Librarian. “This session’s documentary film, Our Genes, Our Choices: Who Gets to Know?, uses a panel discussion to propose hypothetical scenarios that, like all the films in the series, force the formulation of hard questions about the effects, good and bad, of research-oriented science.”

Related Link: http://www.lib.utk.edu/mediacenter/revolution/3.html

Posted by mjb
Feb. 17, 2004