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Robert Pollack is professor of biological sciences at Columbia and former dean of Columbia College. He has written Signs of Life: The Language and Meaning of DNA (1995), in which he draws on his experience as a scientist and a scholar, including several years working on the genetics of cancer cells with James Watson at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, to show how the DNA molecule can be understood as a classic text and studied by the tools of textual analysis. His forthcoming book, It's About Time: Science and the Future of Medicine, examines the ways in which the unconscious dreams and fears of scientists and doctors may inform, and sometimes distort, the agendas of modern medical science.


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