How Cloning a Sheep Set Off a Sci Fi Panic
“Scientists clone adult sheep,” read the headline splashed across the front of a British newspaper in the winter of 1997. Soon, the rest of the world would meet Dolly, the product of a team of Scottish scientists who took a mammary cell from an adult sheep, fused it to another sheep’s unfertilized egg and created an identical twin.
A rush of media attention gave way, almost instantaneously, to speculation and anxiety about what this new discovery meant for man’s ability to manipulate biology – a controversy compounded by a brewing debate over the ethics of embryonic stem cell work.
Dolly’s story explores the friction between science and politics, and what happens when a breakthrough is so tangible and profound that it provokes both our highest hopes and greatest fears.
More Like This
Lessons From the Challenger Tragedy
Normalization of deviance, the process of becoming inured to risky actions, is a useful concept that was developed to explain how the Challenger disaster happened.
Could We Geoengineer Ourselves Out of Climate Change?
Is geo-engineering the climate an answer to global warming? Cold War science has some lessons.
Are Robots Really Taking Over?
Humans are wary that robots could replace them. So what can we learn from the legendary chess match between a supercomputer and Garry Kasparov?
Online All the Time? Researchers Predicted It.
Our social media addiction is explained by theories pioneered by B.F. Skinner decades ago.