The David Baltimore Affair
- Introduce the "Baltimore Affair", 1986 - 1996.
- Review the political, cultural, and sociological factors that
contributed to the inception of the "affair" and to the course
- Review the role of academic colleagues of David Baltimore, academic inquiry
committees, members of Congress (especially Congressman Dingell), aides to members of Congress,
the Secret Service , the NIH, Walter Stewart and Ned Feder, and
the Press, in the development of the affair.
- Review the "aftershocks" of the affair and its effects on the
life of the main protagonists, the political leaders involved,
and the author Daniel J. Kevles.
- Use the lessons of the affair to assess the role of public
agencies in "policing" science. Comment on the view that "science
should be left to police itself".
- Background lecture in class and a reading assignment to the
students (see RESOURCES).
- Selected reading and discussion of Kevles' articles and other
reviews of the affair.
- A public mock trial in class, involving students who represent the
main protagonists, a prosecutor, a defense attorney, and a judge.