The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks – Tara Westover

The Immortal Life Henrietta Lacks
The Immortal Life Henrietta Lacks

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Authors: Rebecca Skloot
Page count: 381
Publisher: Crown
Subjects: Non-Fiction, Autobiography
Language: English
ISBN-13: 978-1-4000-5217-2
Product Dimensions: Kindle eBook / Audiobook

100 Word Summary

This is about ethical arguments on tissue market. Due to illness, Henrietta Lacks, or HeLa in short, donated her cells for studies at Hopkins in 1951. Unexpectedly, HeLa cells were the only kind that produce indefinitely, creating much interest and medical breakthroughs. These cells are the most researched and tested in existence. Humanity has benefited from these medical advances made and this book is recognition of Henrietta Lacks’ great contribution. However, the dark truth of all these success is that these contributions are mostly stolen and Lacks family unaware of the possible remunerations or benefits they could have received.

(100 words)

Who should read:

Friends who are interested in the following topics, social-economic and medical reasearch. It is a book that explore and details the African community in the early days, the challenges and difficulties, the culture and thought process during such times.

Undoubtedly, friends who are in the medical field will have known HeLa cells. They will want to know more of its history and its origins. This book provides a third party view on HeLa’s life while she is alive, and the contributions achieved by HeLa cells

Who should NOT read:

In my view, i think it is a good medical history book for the medical and non-medical readers. If anyone is affected by such social and economical injustice dealt to certain ethnicity, then this book will not be suitable at all.

This book present facts and document the life of HeLa from a third party view.

Takeaway points:

If something is taken away without permission, it is considered an act of theft. Justifications may be made to cover this act, but nothing can change the fact that it is still an act of theft.

The only weakness in this argument is, if only the beneficiary is knowledgeable to protect herself in commercial terms so as to benefit together. Still, it is a remarkable discovery that brings a great change to mankind, and HeLa’s descendants subsequently.

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