The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks
by Rebecca Skloot
The University of Idaho's Common Read is being offered in conjunction with a discussion by David Jr. "Sonny" Lacks, son of Henrietta, and his daughter, Jeri Lacks Whye, Henrietta's granddaughter on Tuesday, January 22 - 7:00 pm in the SUB Ballroom | University of Idaho Moscow campus. A book signing will follow the presentation
This discussion will be followed by a series of presentations on different aspects and implications of the Henrietta Lacks story.
All Events are FREE and OPEN to the Public.
January 29 at 7:00 pm. Renfrew 111 Presenter: Gary Williams, Professor of English – a humanities approach
February 5 at 7:00 pm. Renfrew 111 Presenter: Larry Forney, Professor of Biology – a scientific approach and bioethical issues
February 12 at 7:00 pm. Renfrew 111 Presenter: Heather Gasser, Director of the Women's Center – social science approach and gender and social issues
February 19 at 7:00 pm. Renfrew 111 Presenter: Rochelle Smith, Reference Librarian – open topic and exploring the library and further research opportunities
These talks are being linked to the University’s Common Read, exploring the life story and legacy of Henrietta Lacks. It is the story of a poor black tobacco farmer whose cells, scientifically known as HeLa, were taken without Henrietta’s knowledge in 1951, while undergoing cancer treatment.
These cells have become one of the most important tools in modern medicine. Henrietta Lacks’ story intersects medical and scientific research-- including development of the polio vaccine, cloning, gene mapping, with biomedical ethics, doctor-patient relations and a patient’s right to informed consent--with racial and gender prejudice and economic disparity, with access to quality health care, and with a journalist’s own professional and personal quests of discovery and growth as a human being as a journalist engages with and relates to her informants – the descendents of Henrietta Lacks.
It is the story of humanizing what was dehumanized, of putting a human story on HeLa cells. The seminar will bring together a variety of themes that will allow students to gain a deeper appreciation of the interconnections of today’s social and economic diversity, scientific and medical research, and associated ethical issues.
For more information, contact Rodney Frey firstname.lastname@example.org 208-885-6268
Sponsored by the Office of Student Affairs, General Education Program and the Common Read Committee.