Thursday, February 21, 2008

On this day

On February 21, ...
... 1999, Gertrude B. Elion (left), 81, died after collapsing while taking her daily walk in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. Born "in New York City on a cold January night" in 1918, to a father and mother who'd emigrated from Lithuania and Russia, respectively, she was by her own description "a child with an insatiable thirst for knowledge and remember enjoying all of my courses almost equally." She chose to pursue a career in biochemistry, and in 1988 Elion and 2 men shared the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in recognition of "their discoveries of important principles for drug treatment."
... 1848 (160 years ago today) , in London, Friedrich Engels and Karl Marx published Manifest der kommunistischen Partei, better known as the Communist Manifesto. The document (full text here) set forth a critique of contemporary Europe and a vision for leadership by the proletariat. It claimed inter alia that because of industrialization,
Differences of age and sex have no longer any distinctive social validity for the working class. All are instruments of labor, more or less expensive to use, according to their age and sex.

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