Lectures

COVID-19 Forum III – Introduction

This article is part of the series:

Thirty-eight days have passed since the publication of Somatosphere’s COVID-19 Forum II. In the course of these days the number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 across the globe has risen from 1.1 to 4,3 million, with coronavirus-related deaths rising from 60,000 to 294,997. While some countries, like Italy and Germany, have started relaxing their lockdowns, epidemic control measures in …

Lectures

Fragments of a Transient Affliction: “Mass Hysteria” and the Question of Subjectivity

A study of “mass hysteria” is a study of fragments of a phenomenon in its absence. Absent because of its transient nature; the affliction appears suddenly, without warning, spreading and transferring from one person to another, and then suddenly it dissipates and is gone. People cautiously return to their lives, unsure when another outbreak might occur. How to study a …

Books

Alison Kenner’s Breathtaking: Asthma Care in a Time of Climate Change

Breathtaking: Asthma Care in a Time of Climate Change

Alison Kenner

University of Minnesota Press, 2018. 236 pages.

Asthma is thought to affect an estimated 339 million people around the globe, with a prevalence rates as high as 20% of adults in some nations (Global Asthma Network 2018). It is one of the most common chronic conditions, impacting people across …

Books

Sugar and Tension: Diabetes and Gender in Modern India

Sugar and Tension: Diabetes in Modern India

Lesley Jo Weaver

Rutgers University Press, 2019. 202 pages.

Sugar and Tension is a must-read for anyone interested in how social constructions of gender influence the physical and mental health of individuals living with diabetes. Lesley Jo Weaver, a biocultural medical anthropologist with degrees in global health and in medical anthropology, presents case …

FeaturesLectures

Decentering Metabolism: Peripheral and Southern Diffractions

In the last few years, a renewed interest in metabolic exchange, and in ideas of a porous and permeable body, has come from disciplines like microbiomics, nutrigenomics, and epigenetics. Moreover, a number of technological changes from food manufacturing to different body/technology interfaces have brought to light conceptions of a “new metabolism” offering “a window onto profound changes to the material and conceptual constitution of …

Lectures

Toxicology and the chemistry of cohort kinship

Birth cohort studies are characterized as longitudinal investigations of research subjects with at least one common characteristic, usually being born in the same time and place. Such studies are increasingly common around the world and across a number of disciplines (Gibbon and Pentecost 2019), including toxicology. The small group of approximately twenty reproductive and developmental toxicologists I researched while conducting …