University of Cambridge > Talks.cam > Fisher in the 21st Century > Robert Proctor: "Why did Big Tobacco love (and fund) eugenicists like RA Fisher?"

Robert Proctor: "Why did Big Tobacco love (and fund) eugenicists like RA Fisher?"

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  • UserRobert Proctor, Professor of History and, by courtesy, of Medicine Department of History, Stanford University World_link
  • ClockFriday 22 April 2022, 11:30-12:30
  • Househybrid .

If you have a question about this talk, please contact Matt McGeehan.

In 1957, Sir Ronald ridiculed the idea of cigarettes causing cancer as “a catastrophic and conspicuous howler.” Cigarette makers loved his “itch in the lung hypothesis,” the idea that cancer gives its victims an “itch” that only smoking can scratch, confounding cause and effect. Fisher became a recruiter for the industry, and Big Nicotine ended up funding thousands of scholars, including at least 25 who went on to win the Nobel Prize. Here we explore the scope of this deadly collaboration, focusing on why eugenicists were so willing to shill for the industry.

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This talk is part of the Fisher in the 21st Century series.

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