The author provides little information that informed readers don’t already know, but the gripping anecdotal evidence has...

WHITE COAT BLACK HAT

ADVENTURES ON THE DARK SIDE OF MEDICINE

Elliott (Bioethics/Univ. of Minnesota; Better than Well: American Medicine Meets the American Dream, 2003, etc) examines the part played by the pharmaceutical industry in constructing “a medical system in which deception is often not just tolerated but rewarded.”

While some abuses—including the use of subjects to test drugs without informed consent—are not new, these practices continue despite the existence of regulatory institutional-review boards set up by Congress, because these too have now become profit centers. Elliott writes that pharmaceutical companies hire PR specialists who not only supply educational materials to promote products, they also train medical professionals to be “opinion leaders” and even write papers in their name. In 1998, the Journal of the American Medical Association “found evidence of ghost authorship in 11 percent of articles published in six major American medical journals.” In the late-’90s, articles touting the benefits of the weight-loss drug Fen-Phen—later taken off the market because of potentially fatal side effects—were a key piece in a “complex multimillion-dollar public relations strategy” that minimized worries about the safety of the drug. Market-research firms, writes the author, profile doctors as a preliminary to major sales campaigns offering them tickets to sports events and inviting them on junkets in order to persuade them to become advocates for new drugs. Further, medical professionals are offered research grants and paid large honorariums for speaking engagements and other events. Disguised marketing is even more insidious—e.g., treating menopause as a disease that transforms a woman into a “dull-minded but sharp-tongued caricature of her former self” in order to promote estrogen-replacement therapy.

The author provides little information that informed readers don’t already know, but the gripping anecdotal evidence has important societal implications.

Pub Date: Sept. 14, 2010

ISBN: 978-0-8070-6142-8

Page Count: 224

Publisher: Beacon Press

Review Posted Online: June 3, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 15, 2010

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Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis...

THE ELEMENTS OF STYLE

50TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION

Privately published by Strunk of Cornell in 1918 and revised by his student E. B. White in 1959, that "little book" is back again with more White updatings.

Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis (whoops — "A bankrupt expression") a unique guide (which means "without like or equal").

Pub Date: May 15, 1972

ISBN: 0205632645

Page Count: 105

Publisher: Macmillan

Review Posted Online: Oct. 28, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 1972

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IN MY PLACE

From the national correspondent for PBS's MacNeil-Lehrer Newshour: a moving memoir of her youth in the Deep South and her role in desegregating the Univ. of Georgia. The eldest daughter of an army chaplain, Hunter-Gault was born in what she calls the ``first of many places that I would call `my place' ''—the small village of Due West, tucked away in a remote little corner of South Carolina. While her father served in Korea, Hunter-Gault and her mother moved first to Covington, Georgia, and then to Atlanta. In ``L.A.'' (lovely Atlanta), surrounded by her loving family and a close-knit black community, the author enjoyed a happy childhood participating in activities at church and at school, where her intellectual and leadership abilities soon were noticed by both faculty and peers. In high school, Hunter-Gault found herself studying the ``comic-strip character Brenda Starr as I might have studied a journalism textbook, had there been one.'' Determined to be a journalist, she applied to several colleges—all outside of Georgia, for ``to discourage the possibility that a black student would even think of applying to one of those white schools, the state provided money for black students'' to study out of state. Accepted at Michigan's Wayne State, the author was encouraged by local civil-rights leaders to apply, along with another classmate, to the Univ. of Georgia as well. Her application became a test of changing racial attitudes, as well as of the growing strength of the civil-rights movement in the South, and Gault became a national figure as she braved an onslaught of hostilities and harassment to become the first black woman to attend the university. A remarkably generous, fair-minded account of overcoming some of the biggest, and most intractable, obstacles ever deployed by southern racists. (Photographs—not seen.)

Pub Date: Nov. 1, 1992

ISBN: 0-374-17563-2

Page Count: 192

Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 1992

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