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cynesthesia

so many books, so little time

Currently reading

Ice
Anna Kavan
Wittgenstein's Nephew
David McLintock, Thomas Bernhard

The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks

The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks - Rebecca Skloot Unputdownable account of the woman whose cells were used to start the HeLa cell line and of the family she left behind. The story touches on medical ethics, research, cancer treatment, race, poverty, gender, spirituality, the American healthcare system--really a web of issues. I might have wished for a bit more scientific explication, or even speculation beyond the presence of HPV18 about *why* HeLa cells could proliferate so readily and why they were able to contaminate other cell lines.

(In reading about her acute suffering from cervical cancer, I couldn't help reflect on the people who would rather condemn a grown woman to that type of suffering than permit the use of an HPV vaccine such as Gardasil.)