Description : Decentering Biotechnology explores the nature of technology, objects and patent law. Investigating the patenting of organic life and the manner in which artifacts of biotechnology are given their object-ive appearance, Carolan details the enrollment mechanisms that give biotechnology its momentum. Drawing on legal judgements and case studies, this fascinating book examines the nature of object-ification, as a thought and a thing, without which biotechnology, as it is done today, would not be possible. Unable to reject biotechnology per se, recognizing that such a rejection would essentialize the very object-ive categories shown to be manufactured, Carolan ultimately argues for doing biotechnology differently. A theoretically sophisticated analysis of the nature of objects and the role of technology as a form of life which shapes the social landscape, Decentering Biotechnology engages with questions of power, globalization, development, resistance, exclusion, and participation that arise from treating biological objects differently from conventional property forms. As such, it will appeal to social theorists, sociologists and philosophers, as well as scholars of law and science and technology studies.
Description : Increasing knowledge of the biological is fundamentally transforming what life itself means and where its boundaries lie. New developments in the biosciences - especially through the molecularisation of life - are (re)shaping healthcare and other aspects of our society. This cutting edge volume studies contemporary bio-objects, or the categories, materialities and processes that are central to the configuring of 'life' today, as they emerge, stabilize and circulate through society. Examining a variety of bio-objects in contexts beyond the laboratory, Bio-Objects: Life in the 21st Century explores new ways of thinking about how novel bio-objects enter contemporary life, analysing the manner in which, among others, the boundaries between human and animal, organic and non-organic, and being 'alive' and the suspension of living, are questioned, destabilised and in some cases re-established. Thematically organised around questions of changing boundaries; the governance and regulation of bio-objects; and changing social, economic and political relations, this book presents rich new case studies from Europe that will be of interest to scholars of science and technology studies, social theory, sociology and law.
Description : This challenging but accessible book critically examines the dominant food regime on its own terms, by seriously asking whether we can afford cheap food and exploring what exactly cheap food affords us. Detailing the numerous ways that food has become reduced to a state, such as a price per ounce, combination of nutrients, yield per acre, or calories, the book argues for a more contextual understanding of food when debating its affordability. The author makes a compelling case for why today's global food system produces just the opposite of what it promises. The food produced under this regime is in fact exceedingly expensive. Thus meat production and consumption are inefficient uses of resources and contribute to climate change; the use of pesticides in industrial-scale agriculture may produce cheap food, but there are hidden costs to environmental protection, human health and biodiversity conservation. Many of these costs will be paid for by future generations – cheap food today may mean expensive food tomorrow. By systematically assessing these costs the book delves into issues related, but not limited, to international development, national security, health care, industrial meat production, organic farming, corporate responsibility, government subsidies, food aid and global commodity markets. The book concludes by suggesting ways forward, going beyond the usual solutions such as farmers markets, community supported agriculture, and community gardens. Exploding the myth of cheap food requires we have at our disposal a host of practices and policies. Some of those proposed and explored include microloans, subsidies for consumers, vertical agriculture, and the democratization of subsidies for producers.
Description : Without focusing entirely on what is wrong with the world around us, the third edition of Society and the Environment centers its discussion on realistic solutions to the problems that persist and examines current controversies within a socio-organizational context. After introducing "pragmatic environmentalism," Carolan discusses the complex pressures and variables that exist where ecology and society collide, such as population growth and its concurrent increase in demands for food and energy, and transportation and its outsized influence on urban and community patterns. With further attention given to the social phenomena and structural dynamics driving today's environmental problems, the book concludes with an important reflection on truly sustainable solutions and what constitutes meaningful social change. Each chapter in this interdisciplinary text follows a three-part structure beginning with an overview of what is wrong and why. This leads into a discussion on each issue's wide-ranging implications, and finally, a balanced consideration of realistic solutions. Featuring updated and expanded examples, discussion points, and coverage of recent developments including the US withdrawing from the Paris Agreement, "booming" national economies and wealth distribution, growing global interest in environmental justice, and those generally affecting race and inequality, climate change and renewable energy, this new edition remains an essential companion for courses on environmental sociology and sustainability..
Description : Through engagement with a variety of theories, conversations with scholars, activists, and students, and consultation of IR syllabi and conference proceedings, the authors invite the reader to participate in an accessible yet provocative experiment to decentre the North/West when we learn, study and do IR.
Description : The book is intended as a contribution towards metatheoretical development as part of the post-postmodern 'return to' sociological theory associated with Robert Sibeon (1996, 1999, 2004, 2007), Derek Layder (1997, 2004, 2007), Nicos Mouzelis (1991, 1993, 1995, 2007), Margaret Archer (1995, 1998) and Owen [2006a, 2006b, 2007a, 2007b] in tandem with a study of some of the sociological and ethical implications of selected examples of human biotechnology. The examples include the Human Genome Project, and related areas of interest such as reproductive biotechnology; the attempts to develop a biological sociology by writers of the 'embodied' school; and what Powell and Owen (2005) term 'the biomedical model'. The book is also intended to contribute towards 'building bridges' between post-modern metatheory and biological science.
Description : In today's fast-paced, fast-food world, everyone seems to be eating alone, all the time - whether it's at their desks or in the car. Carolan argues that this needs to change if we want healthy, equitable, and sustainable food. In No One Eats Alone he tells stories of people getting together to change their relationship to food and to each other, from community farms where suburban moms and immigrant families work side by side to online exchanges where entrepreneurs share kitchen space to "hackers" who trade information about farm machinery repairs.
Description : Ethnographic analyses of emerging bioscientific enterprises in Asia, including genetically modified foods in China, clinical trials in India, and stem-cell research in Singapore, South Korea, and Taiwan.
Description : The premise of Studies in Irreversibility: Texts and Contexts is that there is a big difference between phenomena, practices, processes, and events that are irreversible and those that are reversible, and moreover that this difference and its manifold implications remain underappreciated so long as the analysis of culture continues to anchor itself in an emphasis on the capacities of human agency. If messianic modes posit a future to justify the present, and so interpret the influence of the past, the papers in this collection are devoted to examining the present of experience from the perspective of its uncompromising and irreducible past, finding in irreversibility a key to an interpretation of futurity. Together, these papers outline a method of examining experience as something more'or at least other'than the desire to know it, and in so doing they shed light on the powerful role of normativity in the narratives we construct in and about culture.Through novel analyses from the disciplines of literature, art criticism, history, philosophy, ethnic studies, and ethics, the contributors to this book address key questions about the nature of irreversibility: What differentiates the experience of the irreversible from the experience of the reversible? How is irreversibility recognized? What happens when we acknowledge something to be irreversible? How has society contended with irreversibility, and what sorts of tools exist today to interpret its significance? Wary of impetuously fixing the meaning of a still-elusive concept, this volume collects papers that employ a wide array of methodologies, mindful that no one critical approach may yet have proved itself. Irreversibility is not simply a quality of the texts examined in this volume, nor is it strictly speaking a lens through which otherwise coherent or stable texts are examined; rather, it emerges as a model that brings together texts and the thinking of them.By together outlining a method of examining culture that moves beyond reliance on tropes such as functionalism, teleology, and chance, tropes that have dominated twentieth century cultural analysis, these papers help to inaugurate a new paradigm in the study of culture.