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The Center for Genetics and Society (CGS)
a large and well-organized website, with links to hundreds more; good summaries of the scientific and political issues, and the responses of various constituencies; email newsletter listed below

The Council for Responsible Genetics (CRG)
publisher of GeneWatch, “America’s first and only magazine dedicated to monitoring biotechnology’s social, ethical and environmental consequences,” six times a year, subscriptions from $35; website includes archived issues

President’s Council on Bioethics
a remarkable resource; several comprehensive reports, available free, with background papers and transcripts of presentations made at its meetings

Institute on Biotechnology and the Human Future (IBHF)
particularly strong on legal issues; also reposts some important general papers




Genetics Crossroads
from the Center for Genetics and Society (CGS); six times a year, plus occasional special issues; usually includes one or more features, plus news, often with detailed analysis

Bioethics News Highlights
from the Center for Bioethics and Human Dignity (CBHD); weekly, the first sentence or two of about 15 news articles, plus links, presented without comment; plus a monthly Update on the Center’s activities, with Christian commentary

Human Genetics Alert News Service
one mail containing the complete text of about 6 articles, plus brief comments, from Human Genetics Alert (HGA), a British activist group; used to be daily, became weekly in 2004

GM Watch Newsletters
daily, weekly or monthly; a terrific resource from GM Watch, which evolved from the Norfolk Genetic Information Network (NGIN), a news and research service founded in Norfolk, UK in the spring of 1998. The newsletters are focused on GE Food but also cover Human GE; British-based but with a very international approach, including US activities and particularly strong on Africa and Asia; up to 5 emails a day, or single-email weekly or monthly round-ups

Organic Bytes
twice a month from the Organic Consumers Association (OCA); one email with a paragraph (and picture) per story and links to the rest; pdf version also available; mostly on food and agriculture



Many social-justice, environmental, feminist and other organizations have interests in Human GE issues (see Chapter 11). As well as such prominent ones as Friends of the Earth and Greenpeace, which have large agendas, these are among the most important, and all run by activists with a long-standing commitment to these issues:

Our Bodies Ourselves (OBOS)
aka the Boston Women’s Health Book Collective (BWHBC)

International Center for Technology Assessment (ICTA)

The Foundation on Economic Trends

Institute for Social Ecology (ISE)
Navigate via "Projects" to the Biotechnology Project
ISE is the Organizational sponsor for the Northeast Resistance Against Genetic Engineering network (neRAGE), a grassroots network of biotechnology activists and organizations

Disabled Peoples International (DPI)

Indigenous People Council on Biocolonialism (IPCB)




The Center for Bioethics and Human Dignity (CBHD)
a resource particularly for Christian bioethics, with position statements and an excellent series of links as well as an email news service

The National Council of Churches
This community of 36 Christian communions has established a Human Genetics Policy Development Committee, which among other activities produced a Study Guide (332k pdf) to Bill McKibben's excellent book Enough (see below).

The Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life
useful overviews in the ‘Publications’ section

Christian Denominations

The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops

United Methodist Church
search for ‘genetics’ or ‘cloning’

Baptists for Life
Center for Biblical Bioethics

Southern Baptist Convention
search by the topic ‘genes’

United Church of Christ

Episcopal Church
search for ‘genetics’

Other Religions

Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism

Jewish Law
preliminary analyses on cloning and stem cell research

A collection of links to Islamic views

An early overview from Hinduism Today





Agricultural biotech provoked a number of new activist groups, supplementing efforts by previously established organizations like Greenpeace and Friends of the Earth. Sites worth checking for further information include:

The Center for Food Safety (CFS)

The Organic Consumers Association (OCA)

The Campaign to Label Genetically Engineered Foods

The Pesticide Action Network North America (PANNA)

The Institute for Food and Development Policy (Food First)

The GE Food Alert Coalition

The Genetic Engineering Action Network (GEAN)
a network of about 100 organizations, including many local groups; distributes a CD that includes about 2,000 articles worth having, compiled by Luke Anderson, author of Genetic Engineering, Food and Our Environment (see below)




The World Anti-Doping Authority (WADA)

The Pew Initiative on Food and Biotechnology
claims to be impartial but in practice seems to favor biotech; good survey data

Genetics and Public Policy Center (GPPC)
at Johns Hopkins, funded by the Pew Charitable Trusts

The Corner House
a radical British think-tank that produces excellent briefing papers, including a section on genetics

Genetic Engineering and Its Dangers
a large collection of links and a list of books, compiled by Professor Ron Epstein



Critics and Skeptics

Two books with important critical perspectives on Human GE, one from an environmentalist (McKibben), the other from a generally conservative commentator, are:

Bill McKibben, Enough: Staying Human in an Engineered Age, Henry Holt and Company, 2003

Francis Fukuyama, Our Posthuman Future: Consequences of the Biotechnology Revolution, Farrar, Strauss and Giroux, 2002

Other significant contributions are:

Lori Andrews, The Clone Age, Henry Holt, 1999

Andrew Kimbrell, The Human Body Shop, Regnery Publishing, 1997

Sheldon Krimsky, Science in the Private Interest: Has the Lure of Profits Corrupted Biomedical Research? Rowman & Littlefield, 2003

Jeremy Rifkin, The Biotech Century, Tarcher/Putnam, 1998

Brian Tokar, ed., Redesigning Life: The Worldwide Challenge to Genetic Engineering, Zed Books, 2001

Casey Walker, ed., Made Not Born, Sierra Club Books, 2000

Several other books take a skeptical position on genetic determinism, notably:

Ruth Hubbard and Elijah Wald, Exploding the Gene Myth, Beacon Press, 2nd ed. 1999

Richard C. Lewontin, Biology As Ideology: The Doctrine of DNA, Harperperennial, 1993

Richard C. Lewontin, The Triple Helix: Gene, Organism, and Environment, Harvard University Press, 2000

Classic essays by Leon Kass and C.S. Lewis can be found in:

Leon R. Kass and James Q. Wilson, The Ethics of Human Cloning, The AEI Press, 1998

C.S. Lewis, The Abolition of Man, first published in Great Britain in 1943 by Oxford University Press, since reprinted many times by various imprints

Books on eugenics and related topics include:

Edwin Black, War Against the Weak: Eugenics and America’s Campaign to Create a Master Race, Four Walls Eight Windows, New York, 2003

Stephen J. Gould, The Mismeasure of Man, W.W. Norton, revised 1996

Daniel Kevles, In the Name of Eugenics: Genetics and the Uses of Human Heredity, Harvard University Press, 1985, revised 1995

Supporters and Enablers

Among the more extreme are:

Lee Silver, Remaking Eden: How Genetic Engineering and Cloning Will Transform the American Family, Bard, 1998; originally published as Remaking Eden: Cloning and Beyond in a Brave New World, Avon, 1997

Gregory Stock, Redesigning Humans: Choosing Our Genes, Changing Our Future, Mariner Books, 2003; originally published as Redesigning Humans: Our Inevitable Genetic Future, Houghton Mifflin, 2002

Gregory Stock and John Campbell, eds, Engineering the Human Germline: An Exploration of the Science and Ethics of Altering the Genes We Pass to Our Children, Oxford University Press, 2000

Somewhat more subtle are books whose pro-biotech bias is implicit, such as:

Brian Alexander, Rapture: How Biotech Became the New Religion, Basic Books, New York, 2003

Allen Buchanan, Dan W. Brock, Norman Daniels and Daniel Winkler, From Chance to Choice: Genetics and Justice, Cambridge University Press, 2000

Stephen S. Hall, Merchants of Immortality: Chasing the Dream of Human Life Extension, Houghton Mifflin Company, New York, 2003

Gina Kolata, Clone: The Road to Dolly and the Path Ahead, William Morrow and Company, 1998

Matt Ridley, Genome, HarperCollins, 2000

GE Food

The best single book about GE food is:

Jeffrey M. Smith, Seeds of Deception: Exposing Industry and Government Lies About the Genetically Engineered Foods You’re Eating, Yes! Books, 2003; there is an associated website, with a growing library of articles, and an email newsletter.

Other useful ones include:

Luke Anderson, Genetic Engineering, Food and Our Environment, Chelsea Green Publishing Co., 1999

Ronnie Cummins and Ben Lilliston, Genetically Engineered Foods: A Self-Defense Guide for Consumers, Marlow & Company, 2000