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Aeon is a registered charity committed to the spread of knowledge and a cosmopolitan worldview. Our mission is to create a sanctuary online for serious thinking.

No ads, no paywall, no clickbait – just thought-provoking ideas from the world’s leading thinkers, free to all. But we can’t do it without you.

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ORIGINAL

The need for a new bioethics

6 minutes

From identity politics to medicine, the DNA revolution demands a new bioethics

From the discovery of the double helix structure in 1953, to the Human Genome Project of the 1990s and early 2000s, to the Precision Medicine Initiative announced by President Barack Obama in 2015, the DNA revolution has touched almost every corner of society. While a deeper understanding of genetics offers great potential for positive social change and targeted medical treatments, it also presents complex new ethical challenges that must be confronted with care and a thorough understanding of the history of racism in science. In this Aeon interview, Alondra Nelson, dean of social science and professor of sociology and gender studies at Columbia University in New York, argues that this unique moment requires a new bioethics that takes into account ‘the full social life of DNA’.

Producer: Kellen Quinn

Interviewer: Nigel Warburton

Editor: Adam D’Arpino

Video/Music

What happens when rock stardom doesn’t quite work out?

10 minutes

ORIGINAL
Video/Ethics

If soldiers act with unjust aggression they are as culpable as civilian criminals

6 minutes

Video/Demography & Migration

On the US-Mexico border, loved ones on both sides can see each other but cannot touch

12 minutes

Essay/History

Les Anglo-Saxons

Not just American or British, the Anglo-Saxon is a mirror to Frenchness: the country’s alter-ego and most feared enemy

Emile Chabal

Video/Law & Justice

What is Mother’s Day to a child whose mother is in prison?

8 minutes

Idea/Race

How ‘white people’ were invented by a playwright in 1613

Ed Simon

Essay/War & Conflict

Don’t look away

Photography came of age amid the wars and atrocities, as well as the humanitarian aspirations, of the modern world

Jeremy Adelman

Idea/Cities

This striking feature of Manila makes it an emblematic global city

Nancy Kwak

Video/Cities

In the shadows of high-rises, Shanghai’s small neighbourhoods struggle to survive

13 minutes