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Adam Rutherford: Can science ever be rid of racism? © Charlie Clift/BBC

Adam Rutherford: Can science ever be rid of racism?

Published: 06th March, 2020 at 19:51
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Geneticist Adam Rutherford refutes ‘scientific’ claims made to affirm racist beliefs, and tells us why science needs to stand up to racism.

Adam Rutherford is a geneticist at the University College London, which has one of the most prestigious population, genetics and evolution departments in the world.


However, the university was also the home of ideas such as eugenics and race science.

Times have changed, and although our current understanding of genetics and biology should have consigned them to history, these insidious ideas are making their way back into the mainstream.

In his new book, How to Argue with a Racist (£12.99, Weidenfeld & Nicolson), Adam wants to show his readers that what we understand as race doesn’t really hold up with the genomic data, why professional sport is not a particularly good data set for studying race, and whether we can ever truly remove racism from science.

He speaks to our editorial assistant Amy Barrett.

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Amy BarrettEditorial Assistant, BBC Science Focus

Amy is the Editorial Assistant at BBC Science Focus. Her BA degree specialised in science publishing and she has been working as a journalist since graduating in 2018. In 2020, Amy was named Editorial Assistant of the Year by the British Society of Magazine Editors. She looks after all things books, culture and media. Her interests range from natural history and wildlife, to women in STEM and accessibility tech.


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