VOYATitles in the 21st Century Debates series explore how new technological developments can have both a negative and positive side. In Genetics, Doswell shows how early biological discoveries by scientists, including Darwin, Mendel, Watson, and Crick, have led to new explorations such as the human genome project. Although the author agrees that new discoveries have the potential to improve quality of life, emphasis in this book is on the negative implications of the technology. Doswell deals with the problems of cloning, DNA testing, biological warfare, and use of genetics for profit. The Internet is the strongest volume in the series. Graham's approach is more balanced, juxtaposing disadvantages, such as easy access to pornography and the dangers of providing personal information over the Internet, with advantages, such as free access to information and the ability to communicate across language barriers. There are excellent chapters on 'net crime and e-business. Recent developments in the Microsoft court case, however, will date the discussion in the book. Although each volume contains a glossary of terms, understanding would have been enhanced if less familiar words were italicized or otherwise pinpointed in the text. Other series titles include The Media and Surveillance. Less comprehensive in scope than Enslow's Issues in Focus or Lucent's Contemporary Issues series, these short books are formatted to appeal to reluctant readers. Almost every page contains a color photograph or illustration and a box containing either a fact or expert viewpoint or debate question. Used for quick information or for launching a debate, these books provide some useful facts and statistics without thedepth. Glossary. Index. Illus. Photos. Further Reading. VOYA CODES: 3Q 3P M J (Readable without serious defects; Will appeal with pushing; Middle School, defined as grades 6 to 8; Junior High, defined as grades 7 to 9). 2001, Raintree Steck-Vaughn, 64p. PLB $18.98. Ages 11 to 15. Reviewer: Chris Carlson
School Library Journal - School Library JournalGr 6-10-These titles examine the effect technology has had in the past and is having on our lives in the 21st century. Each one looks at the decisions that have been made by individuals, special organizations, and government bodies, and explains how these decisions impact society. Graham discusses how the Internet is being used, censorship versus freedom of information, various types of Net crimes, e-business, and future developments. Petley looks at the influence that newspapers, radio, television, film, and advertising have on our view of the world. He discusses who is in control of knowledge, who regulates the media, propaganda, politics, and whether the media contributes to and/or causes criminal behavior. Each volume has many sharp, full-color photographs. Nearly every page contains a fact box, a debate-question box, and/or a box labeled "viewpoints"; they add visual interest while providing information and thought-provoking points. The authors present the material without bias, attempting to show all sides of an issue. There is a great deal of material here for reports, and many topics may lead students to further research. Overall, these volumes are accessible and authoritative, and provide interesting information in an appealing format.-Linda Wadleigh, Oconee County Middle School, Watkinsville, GA Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
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