Books

Top of the heap: Martyn Pickersgill

This article is part of the series:

This week Martyn Pickersgill of the University of Edinburgh speaks to “Top of the heap” about some recent books on humanitarianism, pharmaceuticals, dementia and expertise.

Martyn Pickersgill

Amongst other bits and pieces, I currently have two large projects on the go: one, on access to therapy in mental health, and the other, on neuroscience and family life. With regards to …

Books

Book Forum: “Demands of Day”

In February 2011, Paul Rabinow, Gaymon Bennett and I began to reflect on the impasses we had experienced in our collaborative work with groups of bioscientists and other social scientists, which had begun in 2006 (Rabinow and Bennett 2012). The core concerns in our interconnected projects in collaboration were how ethical practice and human and bioscientific knowledge practices could best …

Features

Human

One almost feels sorry for the human these days.  After a heady flight toward near divinity, the figure has tumbled, Icarus-like, down from the intellectual firmament to a posthuman sea of forms, forces and flows large and small.  Even anthropology (the very citadel of anthropos!) is now awash with multispecies mashups, circulating microbes and wandering genes, not to mention zombie …

Features

The Joy of Giving: Emotion as Rationality in the Moral Economies of Survival

The so-called moral economy of the poor has been defined as the coming together of “a consistent traditional view of the social norms and obligations, of the proper economic functions of several parties within the community” (Thompson 1971: 79).

This particular angle on the construct of the moral economy, deriving primarily from historical, sociological, and anthropological research among “pre-industrialized” and …

Features

Making up “persons” in personalized medicine with metabolomics

Imagine a world where you can walk into a hospital, submit a urine and blood sample, and be told 20 minutes later that you not only have a particular type of ear infection, but also a 50% chance of developing diabetes in the next ten years.  Such is the promise of “personalized medicine,” in which the development of molecular diagnostics …