Have you ever thought of the social, anthropological, biological, chemical, mental, and environmental implications of genetics? With increasing technologies that can alter and transform our genomes, the Society and Genetics class (and major!) seeks to address some of the possible issues these powers can provide.

1. H.G. Wells

The first book that is taught in this course is a science-fiction novel that focuses on a character who is shipwrecked on a deserted island. Vivisections, beast-folk, and an interesting discussion on animal testing will follow!               

2. Disease

What causes disease? What is a disease? What are the implications of turning disease into a weapon? What devastating effects have already been caused by scientific developments related to disease?

3. Antibiotics

When you’re prescribed an antibiotic by your doctor, do you finish your dose? Well turns out that when people don’t finish their doses, it creates resistance and this resistance may be the reason that we once again become victims to archaic diseases.

4. Penicillin!

Penicillin was a truly revolutionary discovery. Did you know it was discovered on accident? This class will cover just exactly how penicillin grew from being a mold on a cantaloupe to being a life saving drug.           


5. STD’s and Soldiers

For many years, STDs were a major reason for soldiers taking time off in the military! There were even advertisements and publicity campaigns run that warned soldiers to stay away from “carriers” of STDs (prostitutes.)     

6. Tuberculosis and Epidemics

Today, you can visit tuberculosis wards since many have been renovated for other purposes. But at one time, they were hospitals for those waiting to die. Learn about how epidemics reshape entire societies, and how we may be on the verge of one today.

7. Prison Healthcare and Assault

In many prisons, access to healthcare, crowding, and instances of sexual assault make it difficult for inmates to avoid many diseases that the general population does not usually have to deal with.

8. WHO governs our health?

There’s so many organization in the US that govern our health and help prepare us for health-related cataract ropes, but the control of healthcare continues to be a topic of interest for many that is discussed in depth in this course!

Overall, if you’re interested in how the government can control your health, how antibiotics are shaping our future, how animals often are abused for purposes of science and how we may be on the verge of an epidemic, make sure you take Soc Gen 5 at UCLA!


Snigdha Jayavarapu

Snigdha Jayavarapu is a second-year Human Bio and Society major at UCLA. She enjoys writing, dancing and being an RA. She's also a henna artist and loves junk food!

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