Readings

LEC # TOPICS READINGS
1 Introduction  
I. Military influence on American science
2 World War II: Hiroshima, Nagasaki

Documentary segment: The Fog of War. Directed by Errol Morris, 2004.

Stimson, Henry. "The Decision to Use the Atomic Bomb." Harpers Magazine (February 1947): 97-107.

Walker, J. S. "The Decision to Use the Bomb." Diplomatic History 14 (1990): 97-114.

Buy at Amazon Hasegawa, Tsuyoshi. Racing the Enemy: Stalin, Truman and the Surrender of Japan. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2005, pp. 1-6, 179-214, and 298-300. ISBN: 9780674016934.

3 Manhattan Project

Documentary segment: The Day After Trinity. Directed by Jon Else, 1981.

Rotblat, Joseph. "Leaving the Bomb Project." Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists 41 (August 1985): 16-19.

Buy at Amazon Oppenheimer, Robert. "Speech to the Association of Los Alamos Scientists, November 2, 1945." In Oppenheimer, Robert: Letters and Reflections. Edited by Alice Kimball Smith and Charles Weiner. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1980, pp. 315-325. ISBN: 9780674776050.

Buy at Amazon Sherwin, Martin. "The Two Policemen." In A World Destroyed: The Atomic Bomb and the Grand Alliance. New York, NY: Vintage, 1973), pp. 90-114. ISBN: 9780394497945.

Buy at Amazon Bird, Kai, and Martin Sherwin. Preface, "The Impact of the Gadget on Civilization," and "Now We're All Sons-of-bitches." In American Prometheus: The Triumph and Tragedy of J. Robert Oppenheimer. New York, NY: Knopf Books, 2005. ISBN: 9780375726262.

4

Science, military research, and the national security state

Guest lecturer: Prof. David Kaiser

Weiner, Norbert. "A Scientist Rebels." Atlantic Monthly (January 1947): 46.

Buy at Amazon Whiteley, John. "The Hanford Nuclear Reservation." Critical Masses: Citizens, Nuclear Weapons Production, and Environmental Destruction in the United States. Edited by Russell Dalton et al. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 1999. ISBN: 9780262541039.

Buy at Amazon O'Neill, Dan. "Alaska and the Firecracker Boys: The Story of Project Chariot." In The Atomic West. Edited by Bruce Hevly and John Findlay. Seattle, WA: University of Washington Press, 1998. ISBN: 9780295977164.

Buy at Amazon Siever, Ray. "Doing Earth Science Research During the Cold War." In The Cold War and the University. Edited by Noam Chomsky, et al. New York, NY: New Press, 1998, pp. 147-170. ISBN: 9781565843974.

5 Military influence on American science

Buy at Amazon Nelkin, Dorothy. The University and Military Research: Moral Politics at MIT. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1972, pp. 1-13 and 54-65. ISBN: 9780801407116.

Glenn, David. "Cloak and Classroom." Chronicle of Higher Education (25 March 2005): 14.

Buy at Amazon Bush, Vannevar. "Science, Democracy, and War," and "Cold War." Modern Arms and Free Men. New York, NY: Simon and Schuster, 1949.

Galison, Peter. "Removing Knowledge." Critical Inquiry 31 (Autumn 2004).

Russell-Einstein Manifesto, 1955.

6

Apollo space program

Guest lecturer: Prof. David Mindell

Buy at Amazon Mindell, David. "Human and Machine in the Race to the Moon" and "Chauffeurs and Airmen in the Age of Systems." Chapters 1 and 2 in Digital Apollo: Human and Machine in Spaceflight. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2008. ISBN: 9780262134972.
II. Risk
7 Space program: Challenger and Columbia

Buy at Amazon Perrow, Charles. Normal Accidents: Living with High-Risk Technologies. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1999, pp. 3-12, 15-31, and 304-339. ISBN: 9780691004129.

Buy at Amazon Whitbeck, Caroline. "Two Models of Professional Behavior: Roger Boisjoly and the Challenger, William Lemessurier's Fifty-Nine Story Crisis." In Ethics in Engineering Practice and Research. New York, NY: Cambridge University Press, 1998, pp. 133-156. ISBN: 9780521479448.

Videos

President Ronald Reagan's address to the nation on Space Shuttle Challenger loss (YouTube, MP4 - 7.5 MB)

NASA documentary video on Space Shuttle Challenger accident and investigation (View and download video from The Internet Archive.)

8

Space program: Challenger and Columbia (cont.)

Guest lecturer: Prof. Jeffrey Hoffman

Langewiesche, William. "Columbia's Last Flight." The Atlantic Monthly (November 2003).

Optional

NASA STS-107 Investigation reference page - email traffic regarding thermal problems for Columbia and possible scenarios upon re-entry, NASA reports on thermal protection of orbiters, etc.

9 Health and environment

Buy at Amazon Carson, Rachel. "A Fable for Tomorrow," "The Obligation to Endure," and "The Rumblings of an Avalanche." Chapters 1, 2, and 16 in Silent Spring. Boston, MA: Houghton Mifflin, 2000. ISBN: 9780141184944.

Rosenberg, Tina. "What the World Needs Now is DDT." New York Times Magazine (April 11, 2004): 38-43.

Gladwell, Malcolm. "Big and Bad." New Yorker (January 12, 2004): 28-33.

10 Health and environment (cont.)

Documentary segment: Dangerous Prescription. PBS Frontline, 2003.

Bach, Fritz, et al. "Uncertainty in Xenotransplantation: Individual Benefit Versus Collective Risk." Nature Medicine 4 (1998): 141-144.

Kennedy, Robert F., Jr. "Deadly Immunity." Salon (June 16, 2005).

Stehr-Green, Paul, et al. "Autism and Thimerosal-Containing Vaccines." American Journal of Preventive Medicine 25 (2003): 101-106.

Hughes, Virginia. "Mercury Rising." Nature Medicine 13 (2007): 896 - 897.

11 Biotechnology: genetically modified foods

Documentary segment: Harvest of Fear. PBS Frontline/NOVA, 2001.

Buy at Amazon Gusterson, Hugh. "Decoding the Debate on Frankenfood." In Making Threats: Biofears and Environmental Anxieties. Edited by Betsy Hartmann, Banu Subramaniam, and Charles Zerner. Lanham, MD: Rowman and Littlefield, 2005. ISBN: 9780742549074.

Gaskell, George, Martin W. Bauer, John Durant, and Nicholas C. Allum. "Worlds Apart? The Reception of Genetically Modified Foods in Europe and the U.S." Science 285 (July 16, 1999): 384-387.

Falk, Michael C., Bruce M. Chassy, Susan K. Harlander, Thomas J. Hoban, IV, Martina N. McGloughlin, and Amin R. Akhlaghi. "Food Biotechnology: Benefits and Concerns." Journal of Nutrition (2002): 1384-1390.

Singh, Om V., Shivani Ghai, Debarati Paul, and Rakesh K. Jain. "Genetically Modified Crops: Success, Safety Assessment, and Public Concern." Appl Microbiol Biotechnol 71 (2006): 598-607.

Balter, Michael. "Seeking Agriculture's Ancient Roots." Science 316 (June 29, 2007): 1830-1835.

12 Biotechnology: stem cell research

Fischbach, Gerald D., and Ruth L. Fischbach. "Stem Cells: Science, Policy, and Ethics." The Journal of Clinical Investigation 114 (November 2004): 1364-1370.

Gilbert, David M. "The Future of Human Embryonic Stem Cell Research: Addressing Ethical Conflict with Responsible Scientific Research." Med Sci Monit 10 (2004): RA99-103.

Taylor, Patrick L. "The Gap between Law and Ethics in Human Embryonic Stem Cell Research: Overcoming the effect of U.S. Federal Policy on Research Advances and Public Benefit." Science and Engineering Ethics 11 (2005): 589-616.

13 Biotechnology: stem cell research (cont.)

Dresser, Rebecca. "Stem Cell Research: The Bigger Picture." Perspectives in Biology and Medicine 48 (2005): 181-94.

Smith, Shane William Neaves, and Steven Teitelbaum. "Adult Stem Cell Treatments for Diseases?" Science 313 (July 28, 2006): 439.

Green, Ronald M. "Benefiting From 'Evil': An Incipient Moral Problem in Human Stem Cell Research." Bioethics 16 (2002): 544-556.

14 Biotechnology: cloning

Lewontin, Richard. "The Confusion Over Cloning" New York Review of Books (23 October 1997): 18-24.

Buy at Amazon Kass, Leon. "The Wisdom of Repugnance: Why We Should Ban Human Cloning." In The Human Cloning Debate. 3rd Edition. Edited by Glenn McGee. Berkeley, CA: Berkeley Hills Books, 2002, pp. 58-67. ISBN: 9781893163416.
 

15 Biotechnology: market forces

Press, Eyal, and Jennifer Washburn. "The Kept University." Atlantic Monthly (March 3, 2000): 39-54.

Willman, David. "The National Institutes of Health: Public Servant or Private Marketer?" Los Angeles Times (22 December 2004).

Brennan, T., et al. "Health Industry Practices that Create Conflicts of Interest." Journal of the American Medical Association 295 (2006): 429.

Marshall, Eliot. "Need a Reagent? Just Sign Here..." Science (October 10, 1997): 212-213.

Zalewski, Daniel. "Ties That Bind." Lingua Franca 7, no. 5 (June/July 1997): 51-59.

Finkel, Michael. "This Little Kidney Went to Market." New York Times Magazine, no. 27 (May 2001).

16 Biotechnology: genome and health insurance

Hudson, Kathy L., et al. "Genetic Discrimination and Health Insurance: An Urgent Need for Reform." Science 270 (October 20, 1995): 391-393.

Kass, Leon R. "The Moral Meaning of Genetic Technology." Commentary (September 1999): 32-38.

Jeffords, James M., and Tom Daschle. "Viewpoint - Policy Issues: Political Issues in the Genome Era." Science 291 (February 16, 2001): 1249 - 1251.

The President's Council on Bioethics. Beyond Therapy: Biotechnology and the Pursuit of Happiness. Washington, D.C., October 2003. [Skim this document - not necessary to close-read it.]

17 Biotechnology: genome and health insurance (cont.)

Wolf, Susan M., and Jeffrey P. Kahn. "Genetic Testing and the Future of Disability Insurance: Ethics, Law & Policy." Journal of Law, Medicine & Ethics 35 (2007): 6-32.

Dodge, John H., and David J. Christianson. "Genetic Testing and Disability Insurance: An Alternative Opinion." Journal of Law, Medicine & Ethics 35 (2007): 33-35.

Silvers, Anita. "Predictive Genetic Testing: Congruence of Disability Insurers' Interests with the Public Interest." Journal of Law, Medicine & Ethics 35 (2007): 52-58.

III. The environment
18 Climate change research

Film segment: An Inconvenient Truth. Directed by Davis Guggenheim, 2006.

Oreskes, Naomi. "The Scientific Consensus on Climate Change." Science 306 (December 3, 2004): 1686.

Lindzen, Richard. "There is No Consensus on Global Warming." Wall Street Journal, no. 26 (June 2006).

Oreskes, Naomi. "Global Warming: Signed, Sealed, And Delivered." Los Angeles Times, no. 25 (July 2006). [Prof. Oresekes replies to Prof. Lindzen.]

———. "The Long Consensus On Climate Change." Washington Post, no. 1 (February 2007).

19

Climate change research (cont.)

Guest lecturer: Dr. William Curry, WHOI

Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, 2007. "Summary for Policymakers." (This resource may not render correctly in a screen reader.PDF - 3.7 MB)

———. "Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change - Technical Summary." (This resource may not render correctly in a screen reader.PDF - 18.6 MB) [Look over the table of contents, read the parts that catch your attention.]

20

Alternatives to fossil fuels

Guest lecturer: Mark Rogers, Communications Director, Cape Wind

Runge, C. Ford, and Benjamin Senauer. "How Biofuels Could Starve the Poor." Foreign Affairs 86 (May/June 2007): 41-54.

Natural Resources Defense Council. "Nuclear Facts." (February 2007). (This resource may not render correctly in a screen reader.PDF)

Wald, Matthew. "The Best Nuclear Option." Technology Review (July 1, 2006): 6 pages.

U.S. Department of Energy White Paper. "Natural Gas in the New England Region: Implications for Offshore Wind Generation and Fuel Diversity" (2004). (PDF)

Cape Wind. "Comparison of Cape Wind Scientific Data Tower Wind Speed Data with ISO New England List of Top Ten Electric Demand Days." (July 2, 2007). (PDF)

Kennedy, Edward. "Statement on the Cape Wind Project." U.S. Senate (May 9, 2006): 1-10. (PDF)

Daschle, Tom, C. Ford Runge, and Benjamin Senauer. "Food for Fuel?" Foreign Affairs (September/October 2007).

IV. Politics, ethics, and social science
21 Experimentation on human subjects

"The Nuremberg Code," from Trials of War Criminals Before the Nuremberg Military Tribunals Washington DC: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1949. (PDF)

Buy at Amazon Slater, Lauren. "Obscura: Stanley Milgram and Obedience to Authority." In Opening Skinner's Box: Great Psychological Experiments of the Twentieth Century. New York, NY: Norton, 2005. ISBN: 9780393326550.

Documentary segment: Obedience. Directed by Stanley Milgram. Penn State University, DVD, 1993. (Original release 1965)

22

Experimentation on human subjects (cont.)

Guest lecturer: Prof. David Jones

Angell, Marcia. "The Ethics of Clinical Research in the Third World." New England Journal of Medicine 337 (1997): 847-849.

Brandt, A. M. "Racism and Research: The Case of the Tuskegee Syphilis Study." Hastings Center Report 8 (December 1978): pp. 21-29.

Lurie, P., and S. M. Wolfe. "Unethical Trials of Interventions to Reduce Perinatal Transmission of the Human Immunodeficiency Virus in Developing Countries." New England Journal of Medicine 337 (1997): 853-856.

Correspondence. New England Journal of Medicine 338 (1998): 836-844.

MIT's human subjects training

23

Archaeological science: politics of antiquities trade and collection

Guest lecturers: Katie Getchell and Christine Kondoleon, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

Eakin, Hugh. "Review of The Medici Conspiracy." New York Review of Books 53, no. 9 (May 25, 2006): 1-13.

24 Archaeological science: ethical conflicts and political choices in deep water archeological research

Ballard, R. D., et al. "The Discovery of Ancient History in the Deep Sea Using Advanced Deep Submergence Technology." Deep-Sea Research I 47 (2000): 1591-1620. [1997 deep water project that raised political and ethical issues.]

Draft Convention on the Protection of Underwater Cultural Heritage. UNESCO, 2001. (This resource may not render correctly in a screen reader.PDF)

25

Politics in the public presentation of science

Guest lecturer: Raney Aronson-Rath, Senior Producer, WGBH Boston

 
26 Conclusions: review of term, discuss final exam