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James D. Watson´S The Double Helix Literary Review

1175 words - 5 pages

The Double Helix was written by James D. Watson. James Dewey Watson was born on April 6th, 1928, in Chicago Illinois. He was a precocious student, and entered the University of Chicago when he was only 15. He received his Bachelor of Science degree in zoology four years later, and then went on to earn a Ph.D. in the same subject at Indiana University. Watson Joined Francis Crick at Cambridge in 1951, in an attempt to determine the chemical structure of living matter. They continued their work until February 28, 1954 when they made a historic discovery. They had determined the structure of DNA. In June they published their findings in the British science journal Nature. In acknowledgment, ...view middle of the document...

The Double Helix changed our understanding of life. It transformed our view of the world and it changed our understanding of inherited diseases. It also altered the way people regarded the genre of the scientific memoir and the way the public thought about how science and scientists work, showing that scientific enterprise can at times be a chaotic and merciless business. These changes are important because they would eventually lead to the understanding of many things, like how the body is built and how it operates and how traits are passed on. Not only would these changes explain heredity, but they would lead to the use of DNA forensics, testing for genetic diseases, and the way medicine is now being practiced. They are also significant because they would lead to the curing of inherited diseases and it would help scientists predict inherited diseases. The Double Helix affected what I thought about the science industry. I didn’t think it was that competitive, I thought everyone worked together and that it wasn’t a competition. It also changed how I thought about scientific novels. I didn’t think I would like them that much but this one changed my interest in them.
“By spending less than a minute with the summary and the introduction, I was soon at the figures showing the locations of the essential atoms. At once I felt something was not right…I realized the phosphate groups in Linus’ model were not ionized…Pauling’s nucleic acid in a sense was not an acid at all…By then I knew we were still in the game…Though the odds still appeared against us Linus had not yet won his Nobel.” This event in the book is when Linus Pauling’s son shows Watson and Crick a preprint lf Linus’ paper. They both studied it carefully and figured out that the scheme was impossible which meant they were still in the race because they weren’t going to tell Pauling about his error. This event is memorable because if they had not found that error in Linus’ paper then they might have not won the race and would not have made their discovery.
“Rosy’s triumph all too soon filtered up the stairs to Bragg. There was nothing to do but appear unperturbed as the news of the upset confirmed the fact that Francis might move faster if occasionally he would close his mouth. The...

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