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Genetic Witness: Science, Law, and Controversy in the Making of DNA Profiling Paperback – October 11, 2007


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Rutgers University Press (October 11, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0813541883
  • ISBN-13: 978-0813541884
  • Product Dimensions: 0.8 x 5.8 x 8.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,024,286 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"Thorough and detailed, Aronson's work will be the definitive treatment of the recent history of DNA typing."
(Simon Cole author of Suspect Identities:A History of Fingerprinting and Criminal Identific)

About the Author

Jay D. Aronson is an assistant professor of history at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By John R. Carpenter on February 20, 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
"Genetic Witness" by Jay D. Aronson is the history of the introduction, implementation, fortes and foibles of using DNA in Criminal cases on the National level in America.

The book, "Justice and Science" by George "Woody" Clarke does the same thing from the view point of local and state levels based in criminal cases in San Diego, CA.

"Genetic Witnesses" does an excellent job in documenting the historic challenge of standardizing DNA markers to be an outstanding tool in the criminal justice system.

This book covers most areas of concern regarding the use of DNA on the National level without getting bogged down in ad nausea or being difficult to read. The author takes the time to explain when needed and provides copious notes and a detailed index.

One of the things that I really like about this book is the warning regarding the human factor in technology. We often push people to get the job done in the quickest and most cost effective manner. Management always acts in horror when their stress in this area pushes people to cheat to get results. "Give the boss what he wants" attitude regardless of the errors or contrary evidence, unrealistic deadlines and job loads, outdated equipment, poor training and underfunding all contribute to an impact on DNA errors and documentation.

Not only the public has been impacted by the "CSI effect", J. D. Aronson extends, without specifically mentioning, this to the Judges, District Attorneys, Investigators and Lab Managers that the human factor will contribute unrealistic expectations and error rates from DNA evidence. The efforts to limit this are the next challenge in the DNA saga.

"Genetic Witness" is a historic book that is excellent at documenting the early rise of DNA, the challenges, acceptance and warning to the DNA use in the Criminal Courts in America.

This book is a must read for those learning about DNA, criminal justice and criminology.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Amy on November 11, 2007
Format: Paperback
Genetic Witness, covering forensic DNA science, technology and law is an extremely well researched and factual book, yet almost reads like a true crime novel. Aronson, an expert in his field, as well as an Assistant Professor at Carnegie Mellon University, has written this book is such a way that it appeals to a variety of audiences including: students, anyone fascinated by true crime or television shows such as CSI, or those in need of valid and reliable information about how DNA has been used in the legal system over the past 20 years. I highly recommend 'Genetic Witness' by Jay D. Aronson.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book sheds light on the social production of science and the courts. A compelling read for anyone interested in the process through which new forms of testing and the consequences of DNA test results moved from the lab to the courtroom.
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