Secrecy and Privacy in the Biographies of two 20th-century Scientists

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Georgina Ferry

 23rd of March Oxford Brookes University, History of Medicine Seminar Series

Biographers naturally turn to their subjects for first-hand accounts of their life and work. The two biographical subjects I have addressed, Dorothy Hodgkin and Max Perutz, were almost exact contemporaries who worked in the same field, the X-ray crystallography of biological molecules. But their approaches to managing the narrative of their life and work were very different. Using these two examples, I reflect on the challenges facing the biographer as she attempts to produce a rounded picture of an individual scientist.

Oxford Brookes University



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