Aggregated News

Stained-glass window

Photo by Schutz, stained glass designed by Maria McClafferty,
CC BY-SA 2.5, via Wikimedia Commons

While Black Lives Matter protests raged and confederate statues were toppled across the United States following the killing of George Floyd, the quiet removal of a stained-glass window at Cambridge University closed one chapter in the history of scientific racism. On June 26, 2020, a commemorative window in honor of the statistician, geneticist, and evolutionary biologist Ronald Aylmer Fisher was targeted for removal from Gonville and Caius College where he had lived during his time at Cambridge.1 A student petition that had received more than 1,400 signatures objected to Fisher’s “endorsements of colonialism, white supremacy and eugenics.”2 Following a review, the College Council decided to support the students with a statement acknowledging Fisher’s fundamental contributions to statistics and genetics but concluded that honoring him would not constitute a welcoming environment given that he was “a prominent proponent of eugenics, both in his scientific work and his public pronouncements throughout his career.”3 Other organizations, such as the Society for the Study of Evolution... see more