[URBANTH-L]CFP AAA 2008: Transnational Medical Research

Saida Hodzic shodzic at gmu.edu
Sun Mar 9 15:33:28 EDT 2008

CFP AAA 2008
Field of Frictions:  The Practice and Politics of Transnational Medical 

We invite submission of ethnographically grounded paper proposals that
analyze the productive aspects of transnational medical and public health
research. We are interested in papers that address research collaboration
across disciplines and national boundaries and that focus on contemporary
social and public health problems. Papers focusing on Africa are
particularly welcome.

Anthropology of medical research in international health has traditionally
focused on
ethics and political economy in the encounter between “Western” 
bioscience and subjects/patients in the global South. The rise of 
clinical trial sites
sponsored by foreign governments and/or corporate entities in low and
middle-income countries has provoked us to ask who benefits from this new
knowledge and to rethink the epistemological possibility of consent.
Parallel to this line of inquiry, anthropologists are moving to a wider
field of analysis focused on the complex and uncertain subjectivities,
relationships, and predicaments of persons involved in the transnational
production of bioscientific knowledge.

This field of frictions – the “unequal, unstable, and creative qualities of
interaction across difference (Tsing) – is shaped by legacies of colonialism
and current structures of neoliberalism. Yet, postcolonial subjects occupy
the roles of researchers, experts, and social engineers as well as patients.
How are knowledge, rights, capital, and survival negotiated as non-profit
and profit industries forge alliances and pharmaceutical industry comes
together with development industry and university researchers? What kinds of
frictions develop in interdisciplinary and transnational research projects
in which epistemes, cultures, and interests converge?

Possible foci include: Representations – of expertise, suffering
Production – of pathologies, cures, treatments, subjectivities, forms of
Social constructions – of new categories of disease
Collaboration in the context of a donor/recipient relationship
Medical and scientific “capacity building”

If interested, please email us your abstract draft ASAP. The final abstract
is due March 14.

Johanna Crane Science and Technology Studies, Cornell University
jtc223 at cornell.edu

Saida Hodzic; Women and Gender Studies, George Mason University
shodzic at gmu.edu

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