Crafting Science: A Sociohistory of the Quest for the by Joan Fujimura

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By Joan Fujimura

throughout the overdue Seventies and Nineteen Eighties, "cancer" underwent a awesome transformation. in a single brief decade, what had lengthy been a collection of heterogeneous illnesses marked by way of out of control cellphone progress turned a ailment of our genes. How this occurred and what it skill is the tale Joan Fujimura tells in a unprecedented within examine the best way technological know-how works and information is created. A dramatic examine of a brand new species of medical revolution, this booklet combines an in depth ethnography of medical suggestion, an in-depth account of technology practiced and produced, a background of 1 department of technological know-how because it entered the limelight, and a view of the influence of recent genetic applied sciences on technology and society.

The clinical company that Fujimura unfolds for us is proto-oncogene melanoma research--the research of these segments of DNA now inspiration to make common cells cancerous. inside this framework, she describes the strategies of data building as a social company, an unending sequence of negotiations during which theories, fabric applied sciences, and practices are co-constructed, included, and refashioned. alongside the way in which, Fujimura addresses long-standing questions within the background and philosophy of technological know-how, tradition conception, and sociology of technology: How do scientists create "good" difficulties, experiments, and options? What are the cultural, institutional, and fabric applied sciences that experience to be in position for brand new truths and new practices to prevail?

Portraying the advance of data as a multidimensional approach performed via a number of cultures, associations, actors, items, and practices, this ebook disrupts divisions between sociology, heritage, anthropology, and the philosophy of technology, expertise, and medication.

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As such, the study of representations should incorporate their diverse interpretations, renderings, and uses. This diversity highlights the active role of audiences. The consequences of representations—that is, their realities—are the products of cooperation, conflict, negotiation, and sometimes power struggles between audiences and producers, between readers and authors. To understand science as a way of producing realities, we also have to understand this interaction. Scientific representations are separate from the ongoing work activity of science only by abstraction and reification.

I also stress that the oncogene package caught on so quickly in part because a large number of scientists thought that they might learn something by adopting it. Oncogene researchers were excited about the possibilities of understanding cancer at the molecular level. This knowledge was one of the major attractions of the oncogene package. The package promised technologies for producing novel findings and perhaps the keys to tumorigenesis. I view the success of this line of research as equivalent to a perception of the achievement of a productive balance between novelty and standardization.

Finally, experimenters also assumed that their experiments could be replicated because the animals were taken to be the same and to have "the same" tumors, since they had "the same" genes and "the same" tumor genes. They believed that they could conduct reproducible and controlled experiments by using these "genetically identical" animals as experimental vessels, as the sites for their experimental manipulations. Standardized Experimental Systems Inbred experimental mouse lines "realized" the concepts of genetic inheritance and genetic invariability for biologists interested in controlling for genetic factors.

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