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Dorothy Nelkin


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Dorothy Wolfers Nelkin was an American sociologist of science most noted for her work researching and chronicling the unsettled relationship between science and society at large. Her work often drew attention to the ramifications of unchecked scientific advances and the unwariness of the public towards scientific authority. She was the author or co-author of 26 books, including Selling Science: How the Press Covers Science and Technology, The Molecular Gaze: Art in the Genetic Age, and Body Bazaar: The Market for Human Tissue in the Biotechnology Age. She was a supporter of the National Center for Science Education (NCSE), and in 1981 testified for the plaintiffs in McLean v. Arkansas. She had a broad impact in science studies, the history of science, bioethics and in the public assessment of science and technology. She was one of the founding members of the Society for the Social Studies of Science and served on governmental and other advisory boards. She often addressed the legal community, political leaders and the general public.