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September 1997


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Christian C Young <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Intl Soc for the Hist Phil and Soc St of Biol <[log in to unmask]>
Wed, 24 Sep 1997 11:51:41 -0500
text/plain (105 lines)
Date: Wed, 24 Sep 1997 11:01:45 -0500
From: "peter j. taylor" <[log in to unmask]>

An offshoot of the 1993 Brandeis ISHPSSB meetings:

Peter J. Taylor, Saul E. Halfon, Paul N. Edwards, editors
Changing Life: Genomes, Ecologies, Bodies, Commodities
University of Minnesota Press (1-800-621-2736)

A fascinating look at how the culture of today's life sciences affects our

In laboratories all over the world, life-even the idea of life-is changing.
And with these changes, whether they result in square tomatoes or cyborgs,
come transformations in our social order-sometimes welcome, sometimes
troubling, depending on where we stand. Changing Life offers a close look
at how the mutable forms and concepts of life link the processes of science
to those of information, finance, and commodities.

The contributors, drawn from disciplines within science and technology
studies and from geography, ecology, and developmental biology, provide a
range of interpretive angles on the metaphors, narratives, models, and
practices of the life sciences. Their essays-about planetary management and
genome sequencing, ecologies and cyborgs-address actual and imagined
transformations at the center and at the margins of transnational
relations, during the post-Cold War era and in times to come. They consider
such topics as the declining regulatory state, ascendant transnational
networks, and capital's legal reign over intellectual property, life-form
patents, and marketable pollution licenses.

Changing Life argues that we cannot understand the power of the life
sciences in modern society without exploring the intersections of science
and technology with other cultural realms. To that end, this book
represents a collective attempt to join the insights of science and
technology studies and cultural studies. As a work of cultural politics, it
makes a contribution to changing life in a context of changing social

Contributors: Simon Cole, Cornell U; Scott Gilbert, Swarthmore College;
Herbert Gottweis, U of Salzburg; Yrj=F6 Haila, U of Tampere, Finland;
Rosaleen Love, Victoria U of Technology, Melbourne, Australia; and Richard
A. Schroeder, Rutgers.

Peter J. Taylor is Eugene Lang Professor of Social Change at Swarthmore
College. Saul E. Halfon is a doctoral candidate in the Department of
Science and Technology Studies at Cornell University. Paul N. Edwards is
acting assistant professor in the Program in Science, Technology, and
Society at Stanford University.

240 pages
Cultural Politics Series, Volume 13
$19.95  Paper ISBN 0-8166-3013-5 $49.95  Cloth ISBN 0-8166-3012-7
September 1997
telephone for orders: 1-800-621-2736

Paul Edwards, Peter Taylor & Saul Halfon=09Introduction: Changing Life
in the New World Dis/Order

Paul Edwards=09The terminator meets commander data: Cyborg identity in the
new world order

Scott Gilbert=09Bodies of knowledge: Biology and the intercultural universi=

Herbert Gottweis=09Genetic engineering, discourses of deficiency, and
the new politics of population

Rick Schroeder=09Contradictions along the commodity road to environmental
stabilization: Foresting Gambian gardens

Yrji Haila=09Discipline or solidarity?  Ecology as politics

Saul Halfon=09Over-populating the world: Notes towards a discursive reading

Peter Taylor=09How do we know we have global environmental problems?
Undifferentiated science-politics and its potential reconstruction

Simon Cole=09Do androids pulverize tiger bones to use as aphrodisiacs?

Rosaleen Love=09Bubbles in the cosmic saucepan

Peter Taylor=09Afterword: Shifting positions for knowing and intervening
in the cultural politics of the life sciences

The cover blurb by Steve Fuller reads "Changing Life is the strongest
collective bid to date to make science and technology studies a politically
relevant academic practice.  The unmistakeable vision of Donna Haraway,
very much in evidence in these pages, serves notice to those who still
doubt that science, politics, and science and technology studies can be
mutually enhancing activities.  General readers will be especially provoked
by Scott Gilbert's reasoned defense of biolgy as not merely the new queen
of the sciences but the very centerpiece of liberal education in the 21st

Peter Taylor

Lang Visiting Professor for Social Change
Biology Department, Swarthmore College
Swarthmore, PA 19081, USA
phone: 610-690-6858 (o); 328-8663 (fax)
email: [log in to unmask]