Author to discuss scientists’ views on race at Baker Institute lecture

Author to discuss scientists’ views on race at Baker Institute lecture


Ann Morning, an associate professor of sociology at New York University, will discuss her book, “The Nature of Race: How Scientists Think and Teach About Human Difference,” Sept. 15 at the James A. Baker III Institute for Public Policy.


The lecture will begin at 6 p.m. in Baker Hall’s Doré Commons.

In the book, Morning explores different conceptions of race and the ways scientists are influencing ideas about race through teaching and textbooks — even as the scientific community debates the issue. For example, Morning finds that while many sociologists now assume race is a social invention or “construct,” anthropologists and biologists are far from such a consensus. She also examines how corporations and the government use scientific research in ways that often reinforce the idea that race is biologically determined.

Morning will be available to sign her book after the lecture, and copies will be available for purchase.

The event is sponsored by the Baker Institute’s Science and Technology Policy Program, Race Scholars at Rice of the Kinder Institute for Urban Research and the Department of Sociology.

Rice faculty, staff and students who want to attend must RSVP by email (, by fax (713-348-5993) or on the Web at A webcast of the event can also be seen at this address.

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