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Tuesday, May 22, 2018

In many ways it is the quintessential American story–one  filled with segregation, inequality in healthcare, and theft, but it’s also the story of the American drive for scientific discovery. Rebecca Skloot’s The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks shows how the stolen cells of “a poor Black tobacco farmer became one of the most important tools in medicine, vital for developing the polio vaccine, cloning, gene mapping, in vitro fertilization, and more. Henrietta Lack’s cells have been bought and sold by the billions, yet she remains virtually unknown, and her family can’t afford health insurance.”