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Complexities: Social Studies of Knowledge Practices
     

Complexities: Social Studies of Knowledge Practices

by John Law, Annemarie Mol, Barbara Herrnstein Smith, E. Roy Weintraub
 

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ISBN-10: 0822328313

ISBN-13: 9780822328315

Pub. Date: 06/10/2002

Publisher: Duke University Press Books

Although much recent social science and humanities work has been a revolt against simplification, this volume explores the contrast between simplicity and complexity to reveal that this dichotomy, itself, is too simplistic. John Law and Annemarie Mol have gathered a distinguished panel of contributors to offer—particularly within the field of science

Overview

Although much recent social science and humanities work has been a revolt against simplification, this volume explores the contrast between simplicity and complexity to reveal that this dichotomy, itself, is too simplistic. John Law and Annemarie Mol have gathered a distinguished panel of contributors to offer—particularly within the field of science studies—approaches to a theory of complexity, and at the same time a theoretical introduction to the topic. Indeed, they examine not only ways of relating to complexity but complexity in practice.
Individual essays study complexity from a variety of perspectives, addressing market behavior, medical interventions, aeronautical design, the governing of supranational states, ecology, roadbuilding, meteorology, the science of complexity itself, and the psychology of childhood trauma. Other topics include complex wholes (holism) in the sciences, moral complexity in seemingly amoral endeavors, and issues relating to the protection of African elephants. With a focus on such concepts as multiplicity, partial connections, and ebbs and flows, the collection includes narratives from Kenya, Great Britain, Papua New Guinea, the Netherlands, France, and the meetings of the European Commission, written by anthropologists, economists, philosophers, psychologists, sociologists, and scholars of science, technology, and society.

Contributors. Andrew Barry, Steven D. Brown, Michel Callon, Chunglin Kwa, John Law, Nick Lee, Annemarie Mol, Marilyn Strathern, Laurent Thévenot, Charis Thompson

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780822328315
Publisher:
Duke University Press Books
Publication date:
06/10/2002
Series:
Science and Cultural Theory
Pages:
304
Product dimensions:
6.10(w) x 9.30(h) x 1.00(d)

Table of Contents

Complexities: An Introduction / Annemarie Mol and John Law

Romantic and Baroque Conceptions of Complex Wholes in the Sciences / Chunglin Kwa

Which Road to Follow? The Moral Complexity of an “Equipped” Humanity / Laurent Thevenot

On Space and Depth / Marilyn Strathern

On Hidden Heterogeneities: Complexity, Formalism, and Aircraft Design / John Law

In the Middle of the Network / Andrew Barry

When Elephants Stand for Competing Philosophies of Nature: Amboseli National Park, Kenya / Charis Thompson

Writing and (Re)writing Devices as Tools for Managing Complexity / Michel Callon

Cutting Surgeons, Walking Patients: Some Complexities Involved in Comparing / Annemarie Mol

The Disposal of Fear: Childhood, Trauma, and Complexity / Nick Lee and Steven D. Brown

Contributors

Index

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