Ari Gandsman: The Right to Die as an Ethics for Life

 

Wednesday April 25, 4:30-6:00pm. Rosenwald 329

The Medicine and Its Objects Workshop presents:

Ari Gandsman (Anthropology, University of Ottawa):

Sensing the End: Timing death and the right to die

Right to die activism is structured around the demand and desire to time one’s own death under the belief that the ability to control the dying process eases and improves it for both the individuals demanding this right as well as for their affective networks. In such a way, this issue is often framed around logics of individual choice and personal autonomy. While opponents in ongoing debates over medically assisted dying will thus accuse activists of embracing an unbridled neoliberal individualistic ethics that devalue life and the ageing process and reject notions of community and care, this talk aims to complicate this point of view by showing how this process of temporally structuring death can counter-intuitively become an ethics for life.

This workshop will not have a pre-circulated paper. If you have any questions or require assistance to attend, email the MaIOW coordinator: Kieran Kelley (kierankelley@uchicago.edu).

To subscribe to the MaIOW mailing list, visit: https://lists.uchicago.edu/web/subscribe/medicineanditsobjects 

Kristin Peterson: Racial/Pharmaceutical Capitalism and Ethics of Clinical Trials

Wednesday, April 18, 4:30-6:00pm. Rosenwald 329

Medicine and Its Objects & the African Studies Workshop present:

Kristin Peterson (Anthropology, UC Irvine):

Ethical Misrecognition: On Racial and Pharmaceutical Capitalism

In 2004, the first multi-sited clinical trials were conducted to determine if an anti-retroviral drug, Tenofovir, could be taken to prevent HIV transmission – a biomedical technology known as pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP). Before these trials began, AIDS researchers characterized PrEP as a breakthrough technology that needed to be urgently delivered to the world’s most vulnerable. But at trial onset, controversies over the protocol erupted. These disputes, led by African scientists and global AIDS activists, were not recognized as actual ethics claims. Rather trial sponsors declared that those who ‘disrupted’ the trials did not understand clinical science. Actors at the host sites in Cambodia, Cameroon, Nigeria, and Thailand attempted to negotiate a modified trial design. When that failed to happen, three sites shut down (and one site refused IRB approval) leading to one of the biggest controversies that the world of AIDS research and activism experienced. Drawing on the disputes in Nigeria, this talk poses two questions: why is there no ethical crisis when recognition of ethical claims fails to happen? And after years of HIV ethics disputes throughout Africa, why do claims of ethics violations persist? The talk analyzes how two forms of capitalism – pharmaceutical and racial – configure the ethical as a particular logic in offshored research: as pervasive crisis and pervasive invisibility. Within this framework, the term, ethical misrecognition, is a construct of modern knowledge that elaborates on how African ethics claims are racially configured as unthinkable, and therefore made to look like they never happened.

Kristin Peterson is Associate Professor of Anthropology at University of California Irvine. Her research and writing are concerned with theories of capital and property; “popular” economies, trade, and markets; health, science, and medicine studies; and postcolonial theory. She is especially interested in bringing medical anthropology and science and technology studies in conversation with African Studies and postcolonial iterations of political economy.

Refreshments will be served. To receive the paper, or if you have any questions or require assistance to attend, email the workshop coordinator: Kieran Kelley (kierankelley@uchicago.edu).

To subscribe to the MaIOW mailing list, visit: https://lists.uchicago.edu/web/subscribe/medicineanditsobjects 

MaIOW and African Studies Workshop welcome Kristin Peterson

The African Studies Workshop & Medicine and Its Objects welcome:

 Kristin Peterson (Anthropology, UC Irvine)

Tuesday, April 17. 5:30-7pm. Wilder House, 5811 S. Kenwood

 Please join us to discuss Speculative Markets: Drug Circuits and Derivative Life in Nigeria

 Wednesday, April 18. 4:30-6pm. Rosenwald 329

Please join us to workshop a new paper, “Ethical Misrecognition: On Racial and Pharmaceutical Capitalism”

Professor Peterson’s research and writing are concerned with theories of capital and property; “popular” economies, trade, and markets; health, science, and medicine studies; and postcolonial theory. She is especially interested in bringing medical anthropology and science and technology studies in conversation with African Studies and postcolonial iterations of political economy.

Her book, Speculative Markets: Drug Circuits and Derivative Life in Nigeria (Duke University Press 2014), describes a once thriving brand name pharmaceutical market in Nigeria that transformed into one of the world’s worst fake (and inefficacious) drug problems. Drawing on the stories and lives of industry executives, pharmaceutical market traders, industry and academic pharmacists, drug marketers, narcotics traders, and regulatory officials, she describes the making of drug chemistries and market dynamics in the aftermath of 1980s liberalization. She particularly focuses on the intertwined nature of pharmaceutical industry speculation and speculative practices found in Nigerian drug markets. Both must anticipate immense market volatility while managing new risks and chronic uncertainty. In tying market actors to both local and transcontinental economic strategies, the book resituates how we think about market making and non-equilibrium theories of neoliberalism in the postcolony and beyond.

For information regarding Tuesday’s event, please contact African Studies Workshop coordinator Raffaella Taylor-Seymour (raffaella@uchicago.edu)

 For information regarding Wednesday’s workshop, please contact Medicine and Its Objects coordinator Kieran Kelley (kierankelley@uchicago.edu)

 To subscribe to the MaIOW mailing list, visit: https://lists.uchicago.edu/web/subscribe/medicineanditsobjects