Welcome to the Origin Chapters 8 & 9 Discussion!
Please note that in order to receive your 1 PGP for this discussion, you will need to make one original post and then reply to two other posts (for a total of three posts). Of course, this is the minimum requirement and more discussion is always encouraged.
Below are some questions to help facilitate discussion, but please feel free to add additional comments/questions as well!
1. Chapter 8 opens with a description of high school students engaged in an archaeological dig. What opportunities have you found for your students that take them out of the classroom and teach them valuable skills in your field?
2. Dr. Raff makes some interesting connections between the peopling of the Arctic and the peopling of the Caribbean, speaking to the resilience of the people who inhabit both regions. Summarize these parallels. Are you surprised by these parallels?
3. Were you surprised to learn that the Common Rule “which underlies ethical oversight of research on humans (governed by Institutional Review Boards, or IRBs), does not apply to ancient humans”? And that “NAGPRA, the law that governs human remains and artifacts associated with descendant tribes, does not apply to the remains of ancient people found on private property” (Raff, p. 256)?
4. In the section titled “Violation of the Sacred”, Dr. Raff shares the story of Carletta Tilousi and her shocking realization that her DNA was used for more than just type 2 diabetes research. What is your response to the actions of Carletta Tilousi, the University of Arizona, and the tribe(s)?
5. The book ends with a quote by Diné (Navajo) geneticist Justin Lund: “Creating bad relationships took generations, and mending those relationships will also take generations…so plan accordingly! If your work starts and stops in the lab, you’re doing it wrong” (Raff, p. 270). What would you suggest is the path forward in genetics research with the indigenous peoples of the Americas? And what can our students learn about scientific research from this quote and book?
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