Episode 16: Vaccine Patents, Tesla's Travails, and the Persistence of Race Science ft. Angela Saini
In this episode, Jack and Shobita talk about the controversy over making COVID-19 vaccines globally available by waiving the patents, and the recent crash of one of Tesla's "self-driving" cars. And they chat with science journalist Angela Saini about her recent book Superior: The Return of Race Science. They discuss why assumptions about the biology of race seem so persistent even in the context of understanding COVID-19, and how George Floyd's murder may have changed global discussions about race and science.
- Shobita Parthasarathy (2021). "Ensuring Global Access to COVID-19 Vaccines." Notes for a New Administration.
- Angela Saini (2020). "Stereotype Threat." The Lancet. May 23.
- Angela Saini (2019). Superior: The Return of Race Science. Beacon Press.
- Angela Saini (2019). The Disturbing Return of Scientific Racism. WIRED. December 6.
- Angela Saini (2018). Inferior: How Science Got Women Wrong and the New Research that's Rewriting the Story. Beacon Press.
1) What is the problem with saying that race is biological?
2) Why do scientists, and societies, struggle with rejecting the biological basis of race? What are the consequences of continuing to assume that race is biological?
3) How should we understand racial disparities in health without resorting to biological explanations?
4) How might discussions about race in science, and race and science, be changing in light of the 2020 protests over George Floyd's death?