Centre for Social Science and Global Health

Medical technologies: flows, frictions and new socialities

While social scientists often highlight the way medical technologies mediate biomedical hegemony, this special issue focuses on the creative and often unexpected ways in which medical technologies are appropriated by diverse actors in homes, clinics and communities.

The authors highlight key insights from twelve ethnographic case studies conducted in North and South America, Western Europe, Sub-Saharan Africa and Southeast Asia. 

The case studies focus on, among other issues:

  • how sperm donors in Denmark, despite being subjugated to medical surveillance, experience the act of donating sperm as liberating
  • how sex workers in Indonesia turn to psychoactive painkillers to feel confident when approaching clients
  • why some anorexic patients in the United States resist prescribed antidepressant drugs
  • how adolescent sex education workshops in Ecuador are appropriated by mothers to monitor their daughters and shame their ‘lying husbands’.  

Publication details

Medical technologies: flows, frictions and new socialities
Anita Hardon, Eileen Moyer 
Anthropology & Medicine 
Vol. 21, Iss. 2, 2014
(Also special issue of the same journal edited by Anita and Eileen) 

15 November 2016