Global Assemblages: Technology, Politics, and Ethics as Anthropological Problems / Edition 1

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Provides an exciting approach to some of the most contentious issues in discussions around globalization—bioscientific research, neoliberalism, governance—from the perspective of the "anthropological" problems they pose; in other words, in terms of their implications for how individual and collective life is subject to technological, political, and ethical reflection and intervention.

  • Offers a ground-breaking approach to central debates about globalization with chapters written by leading scholars from across the social sciences.
  • Examines a range of phenomena that articulate broad structural transformations: technoscience, circuits of exchange, systems of governance, and regimes of ethics or values.
  • Investigates these phenomena from the perspective of the “anthropological” problems they pose.
  • Covers a broad range of geographical areas: Africa, the Middle East, East and South Asia, North America, South America, and Europe.
  • Grapples with a number of empirical problems of popular and academic interest — from the organ trade, to accountancy, to pharmaceutical research, to neoliberal reform.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“This compelling book demonstrates how a very sophisticated anthropological perspective can transform ‘globalization’ into a useful tool for investigating emerging social forms and ways of ruling and living. Certainly this non-structural approach is needed—one that attends to the specificity of combinations, interactions, sites, and effects associated with the spread of technology and risk.”

Ulrich Beck, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München

Global Assemblages provides excellent and rich insight into a developing anthropology of the contemporary world. The intertwining of violence, capital flows, political fragmentation, and regimes of social and moral control are investigated here in what must be recognized as a major contribution to anthropological scholarship.”

Jonathan Friedman, L’ École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales, Paris and Lund University, Sweden

“This volume will give assemblages of many types a good name—the authors are astute, varied, and at the top of their game; the geographies do justice to the notion of global; and the book has a core intellectual inquiry about reflexive practices that holds together its wide-ranging essays. From transplanted kidneys to research audit protocols, the uneasy interrelationships of global assemblages emerge in the fleshy details of a knotted world.”

Donna Haraway, University of California, Santa Cruz

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780631231752
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 10/25/2004
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 512
  • Product dimensions: 7.46 (w) x 10.46 (h) x 1.33 (d)

Meet the Author

Aihwa Ong is Professor of Anthropology and Southeast Asian Studies at the University of California, Berkeley.

Stephen J. Collier is a faculty member at the Graduate Program in International Affairs, The New School University.

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Table of Contents

Pt. I Introduction 1
1 Global assemblages, anthropological problems 3
2 On regimes of living 22
3 Midst anthropology's problems 40
Pt. II Bioscience and biological life 55
4 Stem cells R us : emergent life forms and the global biological 59
5 Operability, bioavailability, and exception 79
6 The Iceland controversy : reflections on the transnational market of civic virtue 91
7 Time, money, and biodiversity 107
8 Antiretroviral globalism, biopolitics, and therapeutic citizenship 124
9 The last commodity : post-human ethics and the global traffic in "fresh" organs 145
Pt. III Social technologies and disciplines 169
10 Standards and person-making in East Central Europe 173
11 The private life of numbers : pharmaceutical marketing in post-welfare Argentina 194
12 Implementing empirical knowledge in anthropology and Islamic accountancy 214
13 Cultures of expertise and the management of globalization : toward the re-functioning of ethnography 235
14 The discipline of speculators 253
15 Cultures on the brink : reengineering the soul of capitalism - on a global scale 270
16 Heterarchies of value : distributing intelligence and organizing diversity in a new media startup 293
17 Failure as an endpoint 320
Pt. IV Governmentality and politics 333
18 Ecologies of expertise : assembling flows, managing citizenship 337
19 Globalization and population governance in China 354
20 Budgets and biopolitics 373
21 State and urban space in Brazil : from modernist planning to democratic interventions 393
22 The Garrison-Entrepot : a mode of governing in the Chad Basin 417
23 Biological citizenship 439
24 Robust knowledge and fragile futures 464
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