Skip to main contentU.S. National Library of MedicineU.S. National Library of Medicine

Profiles in Science
Pinterest badge Follow Profiles in Science on Pinterest!

The Christian B. Anfinsen Papers

Letter from Christian B. Anfinsen to David Chudnovsky pdf (155,384 Bytes) transcript of pdf
Letter from Christian B. Anfinsen to David Chudnovsky
In this letter to Chudnovsky following a meeting with President Lane Kirkland of the AFL/CIO, Anfinsen briefly reviewed the options for cooperation between labor groups and scientific researchers in the future.
Number of Image Pages:
2 (155,384 Bytes)
1984-02-02 (February 2, 1984)
Anfinsen, Christian B.
Chudnovsky, David
Reproduced with permission of Libby Anfinsen.
Medical Subject Headings (MeSH):
Labor Unions
Box Number: 3
Folder Number: 15
Unique Identifier:
Document Type:
Letters (correspondence)
Physical Condition:
Series: Correspondence, 1965-1999
SubSeries: Alphabetical Files, 1983-1991
Folder: American Federation of Labor, 1984
February 2, 1984
Dear Dr. Chudnovsky:
Thank you for your letter of January 17, and your survey of the meeting that we had in President Kirkland's office. One could certainly sense a real interest in the representatives of the labor unions, and I hope that we can take advantage of their interest to develop a useful program of pertinent research and development.
I have been somewhat unclear from the very beginning as to the nature of the relationship between the AF of L and science in general. My impression at Arden House was that labor had decided to do its part in supporting research that was applicable to the labor movement by actually contributing funds to specific individuals or groups doing this research. Whether or not this is a correct interpretation, I do believe that this will be one function that the unions can partially fulfill since support by government appears to be declining more and more, and the participation of the private sector will become greater as time goes by.
Perhaps the most important contribution of labor, in my mind, would be the power of its structure as a lobbying force on Capitol Hill. As many groups as possible should apply their weight to Congress and to the White House in connection with the erosion of government support of university research. It was clear at the meeting that we held a couple of weeks ago, that it is very likely that individual members of the advisory group will tend to push their own special interests. I may support research in macro-molecules; Macarthy may stress his own personal interest in computers, etc., etc. One of the functions, it seems to me, would be to decide on aspects of basic research and, possibly, development that would bear on problems unique to the labor movement. Such problems might be involved with environment, occupational hazards, and the like. To come up with specific proposals of a more general sort such as studies on cancer or heart disease, etc., is more the area for which government should be responsible. I think that an effort should be made in the case of our advisory body to the AF of L to try to home in on aspects of science that would have a direct bearing on the well-being of the laboring citizen.
This is a very incoherent letter, I am afraid, but I think that the current situation is rather incoherent, and that we need some clarifying discussions, with no holds barred, in an attempt to reach a meaningful purpose for the whole enterprise. I certainly will be happy to participate to the best of my ability.
It was very nice to see you again, looking well and happy. Best regards to your brother and your family. I look forward to seeing you again soon.
Chris Anfinsen
Metadata Last Modified Date:
Linked Data:
RDF/XML     JSON     JSON-LD     N3/Turtle     N-Triples