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"A Portal to the Past, A Beacon for the Future: DNA and the Politics of Racial Reconciliation," the Reuben A. and Cheryl Casselberry Munday Distinguished Lecture

Wednesday, October 21, 2015 at 4:30pm

Africana Studies and Research Center, Multipurpose Room
310 Triphammer Rd, Ithaca, NY 14850, USA

Alondra Nelson is professor of sociology and gender studies and Dean of Social Science at Columbia University, where she has served as director of the Institute for Research on Women, Gender, and Sexuality. Prior to joining the Columbia faculty in 2009, she was on the faculty of Yale University and received its Poorvu Award for teaching excellence.

An interdisciplinary social scientist, she writes about the intersections of science and inequality. Her reviews, writing, and commentary have appeared in the New York Times, Washington Post, Science, Boston Globe, and the Guardian. She is author of the award-winning book Body and Soul: The Black Panther Party and the Fight Against Medical Discrimination. Her edited works include Technicolor: Race, Technology and Everyday Life (with Thuy Linh Tu); and Genetics and Unsettled Past: The Collision of DNA, Race, and History (with Keith Wailoo and Catherine Lee); and “Afrofuturism,” a special issue of Social Text. Her most recent book, The Social Life of DNA: Race, Reparations, and Reconciliation after the Genome, will be published in January.

Chair-elect of the Science, Knowledge and Technology Section of the American Sociological Association, Dean Nelson has held fellowships from the Andrew W. Mellon, Woodrow Wilson, and Ford Foundations. She has been a visiting fellow of the Max Planck Institute for the History of Science, the BIOS Center at the London School of Economics, and the Bavarian American Academy. She is a member of the NSF-funded Council on Big Data, Ethics, and Society, sits on the editorial board of Social Studies of Science, and Public Culture, and serves on the board of advisors of the Data & Society Research Institute.

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Lecture, Special Event


Africana Studies and Research Center



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Joshua Porter

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Alondra Nelson

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Columbia University

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