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April 25 , 2009

From Calcedonies to Orchids

Plays Promoting Humanity in Health Policy


Jeff Nisker has been writing plays since the early 1990s. He did this in order to bring audiences to the position of persons immersed in the vortex of new scientific capacity and its social implications. Jeff ultimately aims to promote humanity in health policy development. From Calcedonies to Orchids: Plays Promoting Humanity in Health Policy is a collection of plays based on Jeff's experiences, those experiences shared with him, and interviews conducted by Jeff. His first play, Orchids, explores the concepts of "health" and "enhancement," "disease" and "difference," in the new world of reproductive genetics in which he was immersed as a scientist and clinician. Sarah's Daughters suggests opening the conversation of genetic risk, rather than allowing its continued submergence in secrets of fear of genetic discrimination. A Child on Her Mind examines becoming a mother in the new reproductive technology age and juxtaposes the beauty of becoming a mother with the ugliness of societal impellations, socio-economic inequalities, and coercive relationships. Camouflage stimulates the public discussion of psychological intimate partner violence, a health issue hidden by a lack of physical bruises. Philip asks where lines should be drawn separating a child's intellectual capacity from chronological age in health policies. Jeff was inspired to write his newest play in this collection, Calcedonies, when a woman crashed into him in her chin-operated power chair and asked him to write a play about her.
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