Medicine, Science and Citizenship

Term: Fall 2008

Subject Code: GANT

Course Number: 6605

Biological technologies and their interventions produce ethical dilemmas that occupy the public imagination and invite governmental legislation. This seminar takes as its starting point contemporary re-workings of the relationship between the body and the state. Much recent work has explored how people advance biological claims to make citizenship claims on the state. Similarly, new medical and scientific technologies and the growth of the pharmaceutical industry have changed the ways in which citizens relate to each other and to states, as well as the way states can discipline or help their citizens flourish. In this class, we explore why and how these technologies are so provocative, what they achieve, and what they disallow. What social and political hierarchies do they produce, and what notions of humanity? Topics include the political economy of health; immigration, refugees, and health; new reproductive technologies; bioethics; medical humanitarianism; the new genetics; HIV/AIDS; psychiatry, trauma and citizenship; and violence against women.

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