The Contentious History of DNA Fingerprinting
DNA profiling—commonly known as DNA fingerprinting—is often heralded as unassailable criminal evidence, a veritable “truth machine” that can overturn convictions based on eyewitness testimony, confessions, and other forms of forensic evidence. But DNA evidence is far from infallible. Truth Machine traces the controversial history of DNA fingerprinting by looking at court cases in the United States and United Kingdom beginning in the mid-1980s, when the practice was invented, and continuing until the present. Ultimately, Truth Machine presents compelling evidence of the obstacles and opportunities at the intersection of science, technology, sociology, and law.
Chapter 1. A Revolution in Forensic Science?
Interlude A. DNA Profiling Techniques
Chapter 2. A Techno-Legal Controversy
Interlude B. Admissibility, Controversy, and Judicial Metascience
Chapter 3. Molecular Biology and the Dispersion of Technique
Chapter 4. Chains of Custody and Administrative Objectivity
Interlude C: The U.K. National DNA Database
Chapter 5. Deconstructing Probability in the Case R. v. Deen
Interlude D. Bayesians, Frequentists, and the DNA Database Search Controversy
Chapter 6. Science, Common Sense, and DNA Evidence
Chapter 7. Fixing Controversy, Performing Closure
Chapter 8. Postclosure
Interlude E. Fingerprinting and Probability
Chapter 9. Fingerprinting: An Inversion of Credibility
Chapter 1. Finality?
American Sociological Association: ASA-Ethnomethodology and Conversation Analysis Distinguished Publication Award
Choice Magazine: CHOICE Outstanding Academic Title Awards