Precision Medicine—an emerging approach for disease treatment and prevention that takes into account individual variability in genes, environment, and lifestyle for each person—raises a myriad of cultural, political, and historical questions that the humanities are uniquely positioned to address. As part of its overall Precision Medicine Initiative, Columbia is undertaking a broad based exploration of questions that precision medicine raises in law, ethics, the social sciences, and the humanities.
Ruha Benjamin specializes in the interdisciplinary study of science, medicine, and technology; race-ethnicity and gender; knowledge and power. She is author of People’s Science: Bodies and Rights on the Stem Cell Frontier (Stanford University Press 2013), Race After Technology(Polity 2019), and editor of Captivating Technology: Race, Carceral Technoscience, and Liberatory Imagination (Duke University Press 2019), as well as numerous articles and book chapters.
Professor Benjamin received her BA in sociology and anthropology from Spelman College, MA and PhD in sociology from UC Berkeley, and completed postdoctoral fellowships at UCLA’s Institute for Society and Genetics and Harvard University’s Science, Technology, and Society Program. She has been awarded fellowships and grants from the American Council of Learned Societies, National Science Foundation, Ford Foundation, California Institute for Regenerative Medicine, and Institute for Advanced Study. In 2017, she received the President’s Award for Distinguished Teaching at Princeton.
This event is part of the Columbia Precision Medicine Initiative’s series, Precision Medicine: Ethics, Politics, and Culture