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Lectures

The new trial communities: challenges and opportunities in preconception cohorts

This article is part of the following series:

The Excavating the Biosocial series has so far focused on birth cohorts as ethnographic object (Gibbon and Pentecost 2020). In this post, I explore the expansion of interest in the early life period, particularly for Developmental Origins of Health and Disease (DOHaD) research, to include ‘the preconception period.’ Recently, interest in this period has produced new kinds of trial communities …

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Lectures

The ‘chronic’ lives of failing organs: afflictions of ambivalent care in Mexico

This article is part of the following series:

Life has always been difficult, Maria del Rosario told me, but she coped. That was before all the sickness. When her mother’s kidneys began to fail, she felt traumatised, utterly overwhelmed. No matter what she or anyone else did to help, it was no good. Their lives simply fell apart.[i]

Maria, a single mother of two, lived in Balcones …

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Books

Sugar and Tension: Diabetes and Gender in Modern India

Sugar and Tension: Diabetes in Modern India

Lesley Jo Weaver

Rutgers University Press, 2019. 202 pages.

Sugar and Tension is a must-read for anyone interested in how social constructions of gender influence the physical and mental health of individuals living with diabetes. Lesley Jo Weaver, a biocultural medical anthropologist with degrees in global health and in medical anthropology, presents case …

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Books Features

Book Forum––Harris Solomon’s Metabolic Living: Food, Fat and The Absorption of Illness in India

This article is part of the following series:

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Harris Solomon’s Metabolic Living traces patterns of consumption, calories, and chronic disease to tell a story about the enfolding––the absorption and regulation––of food in and about the body in Mumbai. Solomon’s book is a powerful ethnographic reflection on how factors held as exterior (local and global cuisine, evolving and competing norms regarding eating and body image) are wholly interiorized. …

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Books Features

More Mango Madness

If you’ve entered the United States from abroad, it’s not unlikely you’ve smuggled food, whether craftily or cluelessly. In a given day, 400-600 pounds of foodstuff will be confiscated from passengers flying into one international terminal at New York’s JFK airport alone. So I learned watching a 1’:53” video produced by A Great Big Story, “Where Illegal Food Goes to …

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Books Features

Meta-Metabolism, or Governing from the Inside Out

Harris Solomon’s Metabolic Living ruminates on the absorption of “metabolic disease” in India as a bio-political index for “globesity.” No doubt, from a public health perspective the questions of obesity and its physiological effects weigh heavily upon national populations and the individuals that comprise them. The high economic, psychic, and physiological costs of obesity and its metabolic sequela certainly give …

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