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Author Harriet Washington to speak at opening convocation

Award-winning author Harriet Washington will speak at Transylvania’s opening convocation on Sunday, September 11. Her lecture will center on her book Medical Apartheid, which reveals the social history of medical experimentation on black Americans.

Medical Apartheid, the first social history of medical research with African Americans, was chosen as one of Publishers’ Weekly Best Books of 2006. It also won the National Book Critics Circle Nonfiction Award, a PEN award, 2007 Gustavus Myers Award, and Nonfiction Award of the Black Caucus of the American Library Association. Washington wrote her book while a Research Fellow in Ethics at Harvard Medical School.

Washington’s lecture ties in with Transylvania’s First Engagements book for the fall 2011 term, The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot. Skloot’s book examines the case of a black woman whose cancerous cells were harvested by doctors and used by medical researchers for decades without her family’s knowledge.

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