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Donna Dickenson

In the News



 In August, May and February Donna published widely syndicated columns on 'Me' medicine--the way in which medicine is becoming part of the 'me' culture, such as the development of personalised genetic testing or the 'enhancement' technologies. Her columns were picked up by newspapers all over the world.

July 29th: Donna was interviewed in a column by Zoe Williams in the Guardian on proposed changes by the new government to the way in which biomedicine is regulated.

Spring and summer 2009:
The paperback edition of Body Shopping was featured on the Blackwell's science website.
Donna was also interviewed on several other websites, including the US-based RH Reality Check.

April 22nd: Donna appeared on BBC Radio 3's 'Nighwaves' programme , where she was interviewed about her book Body Shopping and its novel idea that 'we all have female bodies now.', in the sense that all bodies, male and female, are equally prey to commercialisation.

June 12: Donna spoke about Body Shopping at the Dana Centre of the Science Museum in South Kensington, between 7-9 pm. Please contact Kirsty.Roach@Science.Museum.org.uk

April 20: Donna published a guest column in The Sunday Times on , under the title 'Unseen rise of Body shopping'. In it she criticised the way in which the 'God versus science' debate has become a dangerous distraction during the Parliamentary debate on the new Human Fertilisation and Embryology Bill. 'As a (secular) bioethicist who also sits on ethics committees,' she wrote, 'I find it supremely unhelpful to be labelled either a luddite or a God-botherer when I pose ethical questions about scientific developments.'

Donna made front-page news in The Observer on February 18th 2007, with her comments on the decision by Britain's regulatory authority to allow women to 'donate' eggs for stem cell research, despite the manifest medical risks and the possibility that women from poorer countries will be tempted by the £250 offered as 'expenses'. Her comments were also picked up in Le Monde on February 22nd and she was interviewed on both Radio Four Woman's Hour and Germany national public television.

Earlier in February 2007, The Guardian published a letter from Donna on Virgin's entry into cord blood banking for the stem cell technologies. Richard Branson had claimed that there were no ethical problems in cord blood banking, but Donna's letter clarified the risks to women from the process, as against the very speculative benefits for their babies. If the risks are being downplayed and the benefits overplayed in order to make profits for private firms like Virgin, then that's an ethical problem. She also pointed out that although the Virgin bank will make part of the cord blood available for public use, women who want to donate altruistically have already been doing so for ten years through the National Health Service cord blood bank--without having to pay £1500 for the privilege!

And during this busy month, she also found time to reply to a request from the Daily Mail for an answer to a question posed in a feature article interviewing prominent women in public life-- 'what do women want today?' Her answer was pithy: 'What women want today is no different from what they've always wanted: not to be treated as objects-- of the tissue trade, of sex trafficking, of condescension. Just to be considered fully human subjects. Simple, really.'




© Donna Dickenson 2010
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