Celebrity Angelina Jolie's recent decision to opt for prophylactic surgery after she determined she is a carrier of a mutation in the BRCA1 gene has prompted media attention the world over. Media descriptions of her “Jewish gene”, however, are misguided.
My grandmother died in 1995 after a long battle with breast cancer. In all of the years of her illness, I cannot recall her using the word "cancer." She spoke of being "sick", "weak", "unwell", and she asked me, on her deathbed, to remember her.