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Natalie Angier: Great Example of an Influential Writer

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    For many centuries , people have been writing about many different subjects. Some may just write fiction for pure entertainment , others may write non-fiction to inform people about a person , place, event, etc. Whether they relieze it or not , a lot of writers impact or influence the world. They can release new information to the public or just give their take on a topic. A lot of the influential people tackle important topics dealing with health, politics, the citizens, or even the world as a whole. Natalie Angier is a great example of an influential writer.

    She was born in New York on February 16th , 1958. In college she studied Astronomy and English , at both the University of Michigan and Barnard College. She was hoping to start her own science magazine after college, but instead she was hired to work on one. When she was 22, she became a writer , as well as staff reporter for a science magazine named Discovery. This is not the only job she had at the time though. She also was an editor for the woman’s magazine , ” Savvy” , a professer of journalism at the New York University in the graduate program of Science and Environmental Reporting.

    In 1990, she got a big break , writing for New York Times about many different topics involving science. She wrote about animals , from cockroaches to turtles , as well as human issues , such as depression , men’s self harm , and bad mothers. Her hard work paid off when ten months after she started writing she recieved a Pulitzer Prize in the category of Beat Reporting for a series of 10 articles she wrote. Her writing has since won her many awards , appeared in many different publications, and has made its impact.

    She currently, has four books out , Natural Obsessions, The Beauty and the Beastly , Woman : An Intimate Geography, and The Canon : A Whirligig Tour of the Beautiful Basics of Science. In the books ,she tackles several different topics. (Natalie Angier) For her first book , Natural Obsessions, Natalie Angier dove right ino the world of science. She chose one the most important topics , Cancer research. Cancer is a deadly disease that 150 people are diagnosed with every hour. Angier herself has had a lot of experience with Cancer in her family and has lost “more relatives to Cancer than anything else.. ( Natural Obsessions : The Search for the Octogene) With such a deadly disease and no cure , the world is constantly looking for new information and conducting new research. Although, some scientists , including Angier, are not actually looking for a cure , they are looking at and researching the disease itself. In the book , Angier writes about the people behind the researching as well as the research. It is all about finding the molecular origin of the disease. She goes into detail about the cloning and of genes and discovering which have resistince to the disease.

    She follows the research of Robert Weinburg’s group at Whitehead Institute of MIT and Michael Wigler’s team at Cold Spring Harbor Labratory on Long Island. (Natural Obsessions : The Search for the Octogenen ). They are trying to find the Oncogene , which is the gene that causes Cancer. By writing this book, Angier is informing the public about this journey. This may not affect some people , but for others this could be a new oppurtunity. Knowing some of the research may motivate others to help with finding this gene. The more help could mean more hope in finding the gene as well as a cure.

    As stated before it is important that we find a cure and this research could bring us closer. Angier’s research is really affecting the Cancer research as a whole. Then came her second book , The Beauty and the Beastly, which takes on a topic many don’t know about or may not even want to think about. The book covers the sexual relations of many different organisms , from humans to dolphins. She goes into depth on many different aspects throughout the book. Near the begining of the book she goes into detail about the ways of reproducing and sexual relations for a little.

    She talks about the Human Genome project for a while , which can be somewhat contreversial to some. Angier is really interested in the genes and how they change over time and therefore change their functions. She views DNA ” as a being that moves in space and time , an organism in it’s own right. ” (The Beauty of the Beastly : New Views on the Nature of Life pg. 3 ) Her research on the different functions and changes of genes can help doctors to predict what will/ or could happen to someone and thier body. In the long run her research could save someone’s , or even many , live(s).

    Going along with the biology theme , Woman: An Intimate Geography , was all about how a woman’s body works. She goes through several topics, from just the anotomy to things they need , like exercise. By doing this , she helps the public to understand woman and possibly change their views. Angier gives explanations for why woman are the way they are , which really helps for others to understand them better. She offers great advice to the public on ways to “handle ” women so to say. This book is basically her way of defending women and showing who they really are.

    She shoots down the sterotypes and myths to show the truth to the world. It’s not just the biology part of woman , she is interested in , it is also the social aspect. In society , she feels like men typically have more authority and power than women. Through this book she shows that woman can be just as powerful and are strong individuals. Angier believes that ” Men and women have a lot more in common than they do in difference. ” ( Natalie Angier : An Intimate Biography) , contrary to popular belief. In addition to her books , Angier has loads of articles where she expresses her opinion on another issue , Religion.

    She is an athiest and not afraid to show it. She has come right out and said , “I don’t believe in God, Gods, Godlets or any sort of higher power beyond the universe itself.. “(CONFESSIONS OF A LONELY ATHIEST ) In all the articles, she goes into detail on how religion affects the world. Although many people don’t relieze it , religion is everywhere in our lives. It is most known to be in a private life , or in a religious building , but it can come into play in fields such as politics or education , just like race and or gender.

    In a country that is filled with religous beliefs , being an athiest is not the best position. If someone ran for president and revealed their lack of religion / religious beliefs , many would not vote for them for that reason only. The amount of atheists is actually “a much larger group than Jews , Muslims, Buddhists, and Unitarians put together. ” ( The Eloquent Athiest) Unfortunatly , this group is still not that big. By coming out with her beliefs , even under those conditions, Angier may influence others to do the same. She may even influence them so much that they change their views/beliefs.

    If more and more people come forward with their beliefs ( or lack there of ) , the un-equality could possibly be destroyed. In the world of writing , it’s not always fictional stories or fact after fact. Some writers write about major topics. This is not the easiest thing to do , seeing as the topic is probably one a lot of people are following. A lot of the writers end up influencing or inspiring the reader. When the audience reads the writing , there might be several issues in the piece that the reader has an opinion on. If the author has included their opinion on the topic then it’s up to the reader to decide if they agree or not.

    Thanks to the author , they could have a completly new viewpoint. In other cases , the audience may have no knowledge on the topic , and learn everything from the author. In most cases , an influential author’s writing will stick with the reader. When Natalie Angier writes , she combines her opinion along with the facts on a major topic. She gives the audience something to think about as well as disagree or agree with. She is a very powerful writer with influence in eveything she writes , which is why she is included on the College Board’s list of writers.

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