Encoding Capital: The Political Economy of the Human Genome Project / Edition 1

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This book deals with the rapid changes in contemporary molecular biology, particularly genome sciences, and the manner in which they can be understood through the lens of political economy. Specifically, the work investigates the case of the United States-led Genome Project (HGP), in order to show that even large-scale basic science is closely bound up in the progression of capitalist social relations. The work has, in part, been motivated by the lack of rigorous analysis of the HGP. Most the existing literature tends to present either a chronological review of events surrounding the HGP or describe it thematically. In contrast, this book contributes to a needed discussion concerning the 'why and how' of the HGP emergence. It elucidates the features within capitalist social relations which have simultaneously enable the HGP and ensure its amenability to systemic demands. The work's most compelling elements are both historical and analytical. Historically, it places the HGP within the context of wider political, economic and social issues. Related to this, it puts forward an analytical, explanatory understanding of the project's emergence, making it a valuable tool for both political economists, science & society theorists, and even bioethicists.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780415972314
  • Publisher: Taylor & Francis
  • Publication date: 12/28/2004
  • Series: New Political Economy Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 256
  • Product dimensions: 6.20 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Table of Contents

Ch. 1 Introduction 1
Ch. 2 Contextualizing and understanding human genome sciences 9
Ch. 3 Understanding science and technology : a political economy framework 31
Ch. 4 U.S. capital, innovation and the HGP 59
Ch. 5 The state, the HGP and capitalist development 95
Ch. 6 Science and labor : norms, discipline and the HGP 135
Ch. 7 Conclusion 171
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