Friday, 5 April 2013

The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks

This novel tells the story of Henrietta Lacks and her infamous HeLa cells. Many may not know this but Henrietta's cells are the foundation of modern medical science. This book brings many emotions to the surface, anger, for how Henrietta was exploited; fear, for her family and our society; betrayed, by the doctors, Henrietta's family; and enlightened by the knowledge. At the end of the book there is a feeling of gratitude, that this story was told.

Before we read this book we knew nothing of Henrietta Lacks, her cells or their contribution to science. Her story opened our eyes to how much more we need to learn about our heritage and who we are as black people. It also taught us that despite the negative ways that we are portrayed throughout history, our contributions can not be dismissed or overlooked. However, it is our responsibility to educate ourselves and our children, and to ensure that these stories are never forgotten. If we share theses stories it will propel us to live a life that is above average. One that is worthy of the sacrifices of those who have gone before us. Otherwise, they die in vain.

There are so many more stories that allow us to understand why we are the way we are. Until we know these stories we will never be able to truly talk and come to terms about our past.

In 2010, our book club, Women Wine and Word, started out as a brilliant idea from one of our members (we call her the queen). We meet once a month to discuss our books, eat some food, drink a little wine, and have fun with our friends.

We invite you to check out our monthly blogs, browse through our reading list, or take a peek at our book reviews (FYI - only a few books have received 5/5 wine glasses).

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