A short, highly directed guide to an area of science that is little understood but increasingly part of public discourse.

CONTROL tells the story of attempts by the powerful throughout history to dictate and dominate reproduction and regulate the interface of breeding and society. It is an urgently needed examination, deeply steeped in contemporary genetics, that unpicks one of the defining - and most destructive - ideas of the twentieth century. To know this history is to inoculate ourselves against its being repeated.  And today, with new gene editing techniques, very real conversations are happening - including in the heart of British government - about tinkering with the DNA of our unborn children, to make them smarter, fitter, stronger. 

Dr Adam Rutherford is a science writer and broadcaster. He studied genetics at University College London, and during his PhD on the developing eye, he was part of a team that identified the first genetic cause of a form of childhood blindness. He has written and presented many award-winning series and programmes for the BBC, including the flagship weekly Radio 4 programme Inside Science and The Curious Cases of Rutherford & Fry with Dr Hannah Fry.

Chaired by Steve Drayton BBC Newcastle

‘Weighty and serious but accessible and perfectly pitched. The scholarship is astounding.’  Professor Alice Roberts

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