Deciphering Human Chromosone 16: We Report Here
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What did we say, do and think about genetics, nature, human nature and the possibilities for change that science and technology seemed to be opening up in the wake of the Human Genome Project? How are these debates moving on? Jacobs’ Deciphering Human Chromosone 16 project sharply explores these questions and more through its pair of publications. The ebook, We Report Here, documents the ethical, economic, political and philsophical polemics associated with this scientific quest in the wake of the announcement in the journal Nature (December, 2004) of its completion. Those polemics are put into the context of history and everyday life through Jacobs’ fluid ebook archive, which contains links to over 250 websites collected in the months following the announcement, and whose contents change, migrate and disappear over time.
The codex publication, Deciphering Human Chromosone 16: Index to the Report, which forms the second half of Jacobs’ project, is also published by information as material and full details can be found here.
Increasingly, information is being seen as a material for the artist – just like bronze or paint. Sarah Jacobs has taken the largest collection of information – the genome – and made an e-book, which in the ephemeral nature of its hyper-links defeats our notions of the stability of a book. ‘Index’, however, is a physical book that functions as part of the would-be bookly apparatus of the e-book, its index. Text is both background and foreground, whilst different type sizes and vertical and horizontal orientations dis-orient the reader. Its physicality is problematised. Sarah Jacobs claims to be its ‘co-ordinator’: in fact she is its author and artist. ”
– Stephen Bury, Head of American and European Collections, British Library
We Report Here
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