Download Bodies, Commodities, and Biotechnologies: Death, Mourning, by Lesley Sharp PDF

By Lesley Sharp

In the us this day, the human physique defines a profitable web site of reusable elements, starting from entire organs to minuscule or even microscopic tissues. even if the scientific practices that allow the move of elements from one physique to a different most probably relieve ache and expand lives, they've got additionally irrevocably altered perceptions of the cultural values assigned to the physique.

Organ move is wealthy terrain to enquire& mdash;especially within the American context, the place subtle technological interventions have considerably formed understandings of health and wellbeing and wellbeing and fitness, pain, and demise. In Bodies, Commodities, and Biotechnologies, Lesley Sharp probes the ideological assumptions underlying the move of physique elements, the social importance of donors' deaths, and the medico-scientific wants surrounding advanced kinds of physique fix. Sharp additionally considers the experimental realm, during which nonhuman species and synthetic units current extra possibilities for restoration and for controversy.

A compelling medical research and social critique, Bodies, Commodities, and Biotechnologies explores the pervasive, and every now and then pernicious, practices shaping American biomedicine within the twenty-first century.

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Additional info for Bodies, Commodities, and Biotechnologies: Death, Mourning, and Scientific Desire in the Realm of Human Organ Transfer

Sample text

Consider, for instance, Gift of Life of Delaware and Michigan; LifeCenter in Idaho, Alabama, and Washington; LifeBanc, Life Connection, and Lifeline in Ohio; Life Choice in Connecticut; LifeNet of Virginia; LifeShare in North Carolina; LifeSource of Minnesota; and Florida’s Life Link, Life Alliance, TransLife, and LifeQuest. Organ recipients have developed their own specialized way of celebrating life over death, for many speak of their transplants as “rebirths,” and they may even mark its date with a party where they and loved ones ingest a cake baked in the shape of the transplanted organ.

Across the United States, a range of gardens honor financial sponsors (an altogether different category of donor) or the victims of crimes or incurable diseases, or they serve as ecological projects designed to stave off urban or suburban sprawl. All, in their own ways, celebrate the theme of renewal. When organ donor gardens are considered in their entirety, however, the iconography of plant life, set against the cenotaph and stone marker, reveals an altogether different set of ideological goals.

Within some professional circles, for example, organs are even described as one of our most precious national resources. Third, because so many transplants depend on cadaveric donation, the legitimacy of organ transfer in legal, medical, and social terms necessitates that all involved parties embrace the legitimacy of brain death criteria (Lock 2002). This is because head injury—resulting from a traffic accident, a gunshot wound, or a massive stroke, for instance—remains the primary cause of death for organ donors in this country.

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