'In Our Time': Trofim Lysenko
By BBC RADIO 4
Added: Fri, 06 Jun 2008 23:00:00 UTC
BBC Radio 4: In Our Time, with Trofim Lysenko
Find out more about this subject by using our research page
In 1928, as America heads towards the Wall Street Crash, Joseph Stalin reveals his master plan - nature is to be conquered by science, Russia to be made brutally, glitteringly modern and the world transformed by communist endeavour.
Into the heart of this vision stepped Trofim Lysenko, a self-taught geneticist who promised to turn Russian wasteland into a grain-laden Garden of Eden.
Today, Lysenko is a byword for fraud but in Stalin's Russia his ideas became law. They reveal a world of science distorted by ideology, where ideas were literally a matter of life and death. To disagree with Lysenko risked the gulag and yet he damaged, perhaps irreparably, the Soviet Union's capacity to fight and win the Cold War.
Robert Service, Professor of Russian History at the University of Oxford
Steve Jones, Professor of Genetics at University College London
Catherine Merridale, Professor of Contemporary History at Queen Mary, University of London
Link to download: http://downloads.bbc.co.uk/podcasts/radio4/iot/iot_20080605-1130.mp3
Link to download off site: http://www.richarddawkins.net/audio/iot_20080605-1130.mp3
Michel Day - The Independent 17 Comments
Mario Cal's death at an institution with links to the Papacy has put corruption claims in the spotlight, says Michael Day
Michael Nugent - www.michaelnugent.com 55 Comments
How can we believe, without corroboration, anything that members of the Irish Catholic Hierarchy say in cases where it is in their interest to mislead us? That is surely the central question that arises from the Cloyne Report into the handling of allegations of sexual abuse of children by priests in the Catholic Diocese of Cloyne in Ireland, especially when seen alongside the previous revelation that Archbishop Desmond Connell of Dublin was happy to deliberately mislead people by a process that he described as ‘mental reservation’.
Sanal Edamaruku - NewHumanist.org.uk 23 Comments
Sathya Sai Baba caused great damage to India. His irresponsible political patrons corrupted the political culture of India. Encouraged by the clout of Sathya Sai Baba, a new clan of miracle mongers imitated him. India would have been a better place without Sathya Sai Baba.