Cultures of Science and Technology
Science and technology figure centrally in the economic, political, and socio-cultural changes that impact on our worlds. Happenings in the life sciences, including the discovery of new genes and genomic processes, pathways, and processes, are redrawing concepts of the body and human nature and re-figuring social and political relations. The seminar starts from the premise that scientific facts are made, not things existing a priori. Focusing on the biosciences, we explore the production of science and technology and how they 1) affect individuals, self-identities, subjectivity, and social relationships; 2) have interacted with or reinforced political programs, unequal access to knowledge, and patterns of social injustice; 3) inform contemporary institutional structures, strategies of governance, and practices of citizenship. We will combine methods and perspectives from social and cultural anthropology, the philosophy and history of science, and the social studies of science and technology, in addition to relying on historical case studies, ethnographies of science, scientific and medical journals, documentary films and media reports. Students are encouraged to email the instructor at firstname.lastname@example.org if they have any questions regarding the course.