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Reporting Risk: Science Journalism and the Prospect of Human Cloning

  • Stuart Allan
  • Alison Anderson
  • Alan Petersen

Abstract

‘THE LIVING NIGHTMARE: Sect first baby “clone”’ declared the front page of Britain’s Daily Mirror on 28 December 2002. The lead news item, featuring a photograph of ‘Dr Boisselier’, together with one ostensibly of ‘the embryo of [the] first human clone’ alongside it, reads as follows:

A CULT’S claim to have produced the world’s first human clone was branded a ‘living nightmare’ yesterday.

The Geneva-based Raelian Movement, which believes mankind was created by aliens, said a ‘healthy’ 71b cloned baby girl was born by caesarean section to US parents on Boxing Day.

But British genetics expert Dr Patrick Dixon said if the claim was true it would prompt ‘revulsion and disgust’.

He said: ‘This baby has been born into a living nightmare with a high risk of malformations, ill-health, early death and unimaginably severe emotional pressures.

‘We must not allow this terrible future.’

Scientist Brigitte Boisselier, who heads a bio-research company set up by the Raelians, announced the alleged cloning at a Miami press conference.

Keywords

Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy News Medium News Story News Item Risk Society 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Stuart Allan, Alison Anderson and Alan Petersen 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Stuart Allan
  • Alison Anderson
  • Alan Petersen

There are no affiliations available

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