Events

Listed below are forthcoming events in Sociology, Philosophy and Anthropology.

See also all events in the College of Social Sciences and International Studies.

Any college staff or postgraduates may always attend. Anyone else should contact the department or the centre in question.

WhenTimeDescriptionLocationAdd to Calendar
7 January 201515:00

Dr. Rachel Jarvie, Exeter. '''Maternal Diabesity: The Disconnect between Policy/Practice and the Material Realities of Women's Lives'

SPA Research seminar: Abstract: There is increasing prevalence of ‘maternal obesity’, Gestational Diabetes Mellitus (GDM) and Type Two Diabetes Mellitus (T2DM) in pregnancy. Increasing prevalence of diabetes in pregnancy is widely attributed to dramatically increasing levels of ‘obesity’ in women of childbearing age. Co-existing ‘maternal obesity’ and GDM/T2DM, or ‘maternal diabesity’, complicates increasing numbers of pregnancies in the UK. These ‘conditions’ are associated with adverse maternal and fetal outcomes. Recent research indicates an ‘obese’/diabetic ‘intrauterine milieu’ may epigenetically programme the fetus to obesity/diabetes in later life. This is considered to be an important factor in the perpetuation of the ‘diabesity epidemic’. Biomedical/policy discourses emphasise the necessity for women to effect lifestyle changes in order for this public health issue to be ameliorated. Epidemiological data shows clear associations between these medical ‘conditions’ and lower socio-economic status/deprivation. However, this is under-discussed in the literature. I carried out a qualitative longitudinal study of 30 women with ‘maternal diabesity’. Women were predominantly of low socio-economic status, with some experiencing considerable material deprivation. In this talk I draw upon Bourdieusian conceptual tools: the habitus and ‘distance from necessity’, to discuss the disjuncture between policy/practice and the material realities of women’s everyday lives. Full details
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12 January 201515:00

"The changing natures of natural medicines, as seen by regulatory scientists" - Dr Jennifer Cuffe (University of Exeter)

Please note change in date, was 14/1/14. Nature, as Raymond Williams remarked, “is perhaps the most complex word in the language” (1976). Nevertheless, the word (as a qualifier) was used, in Canada, to create a new legal category of commodified medicines: that of ‘natural health products.’ With this change in law, regulatory scientists were mandated to segregate out medicines that would be regulated as natural health products, from those that would continue to be regulated as drugs. Needless to say, which medicines should be considered natural for the purposes of regulation was not always self-evident. This paper takes an anthropological and historical approach to the question of how Canadian regulatory scientists have approached the “nature” in drugs. It takes an anthropological approach by describing how regulatory scientists approached their task of segregating out natural medicines when the new regulations were enacted. It then provides an overview of how plant-based medicines have been marketed and regulated through the twentieth century, to explain how the regulators were able to approach their classificatory task as they did. I argue that the current safety of natural health products is to some extent a self-fulfilling prophecy, because government officials, formally and informally, have progressively made the idea of a risky natural health product (according to regulatory practice) into an oxymoron since the early 1900s. Full details
Byrne HouseAdd this to your calendar
16 January 201514:00

Professor Aaron Gross (Uni of San Diego) "The Question of the Animal and Religion: Theoretical Stakes, Practical Implications"

Drawing from a recent book project, this presentation argues for a reconfiguration of the category of the animal in the study of culture and religion. Foundational theorists in the human sciences have almost without exception approached society, culture, and religion as phenomena that radically mark humans off from other animals. Against this paradigm, this paper shows how this foreclosure has marred the human sciences, especially their ability to productively describe and analyze non-western and non-Christian cultures. It matches religion more closely with the life sciences to better theorize human nature, the nature of life, and the structure of their study in in the academy. Drawing especially on Jacques Derrida’s theorization of “disavowal,” “war,” and “sacrifice" and on decades of debates in anthropology about the radical challenges posed by the study of hunter-gatherers, particularly the scholarship of Tim Ingold, the paper offers new resources for imagining the nature of nature, of human society and culture, and of the most jealously guarded of all claims to human uniqueness: religion. Specifically, it argues for an animal hermeneutic parallel to that of race or feminist theory that both exposes the longstanding insinuation of theological ideals in mainstream scholarship that claims relative neutrality, and also allows us to imagine social, cultural, or even religious subjects that are no longer simply human. Aaron S. Gross is a historian of religions at the University of San Diego who specializes in Jewish traditions and has a sub-specialty in South Asian traditions. Gross is presently visiting the UK as a Leverhulme Trust Visiting Fellow with the University of Chester. He is active in the leadership of the American Academy of Religion’s Animals and Religion Group and the Society for Jewish Ethics, and has founded the non-profit advocacy organization, Farm Forward. He co-edited Animals and the Human Imagination: A Companion to Animal Studies in 2012 and authored The Question of the Animal and Religion: Theoretical Stakes, Practical Implications in 2015, both with Columbia University Press. Full details
Amory B106Add this to your calendar
21 January 201515:00

Prof. XiaoWei, Tsinghua University, Beijing. "Confucian Culture, and Bioethics"

SPA Research Seminar Chinese culture is based on Confucianism, which still influences the thinking and behaviors of Chinese in many ways. Contemporary China has been facing many ethical issues, especially in the fields of Bioethics. Confucian ethical culture is a system of reflecting on ways of addressing these problems. In this talk I will firstly, discuss the characteristics of Confucian Ethical thinking. Secondly, I will discuss Bioethics and the features of Confucian Bioethics. Thirdly, I will talk about some practical bioethical issues and how they are framed in the perspectives of Confucian Bioethics. This talk is also a contribution to the ongoing debate “Is Confucianism similar to Feminist Ethics of Care?” Full details
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28 January 201515:00

"Human Nature, Human Processes, and Human Kinds" - Prof John Dupre (University of Exeter)

Egenis seminar Full details
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4 February 201515:00

Prof. Ilana Loewy, Paris. title tbc

SPA Research Seminar Full details
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11 February 201515:00

"The Wild-Indoors: The Room Spaces of Scientific Inquiry” - Dr Ann Kelly (University of Exeter)

Egenis seminar Full details
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18 February 201515:00

"Ethical harmonization across space: logistic and regulatory issues in implementing a multi-national clinical trial" Prof Christine Hauskeller and Dr Nicole-Kerstin Baur, University of Exeter

In this talk we report findings from an empirical investigation of the process in which a stem cell clinical trial is being implemented across 10 European countries. As part of a clinical trial team, we had the unique opportunity to study implementation – including its events and problems - while it happened. Obstacles for swift patient recruitment across clinical sites arose for a variety of reasons, but most are related to the minute standardization of practice which is the basis for the scientific approach in medicine that identifies clinical trials as ultimate evidence for clinical efficacy. We identified differences in resource management and in locally entrenched daily routines of patient care, but also in the practical implementation of regulations and insurance requirements, for example, which as such relate back to specific understandings of best practice in clinical care. Our findings show that the policies developed to harmonise medical practice and clinical trials in Europe can lead to serious delays before patient recruitment even starts. We especially focus on problems with the logistics and technological requirements following European Medicines Agency (EMA) regulations and the effects of the Voluntary Harmonisation Procedure (VHP), a protocol aimed at simplifying multinational ethics approval of general agreements which depend on both trust and coherence in other policies. Full details
Byrne HouseAdd this to your calendar
25 February 201515:00

Dr Stephan Guttinger

Egenis seminar Full details
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4 March 201515:00

“Causation, Convention and Individuation” - Dr Amber Carpenter (University of York)

This paper will consider two rival accounts of the relationship between causation and individuation. On both accounts, familiar individual things have a reality relative to purposes and conventions, making our everyday metaphysical presumptions matters of moral import. On one view, there are pre-conventional individuals which cause, and thus warrant, our practices of everyday individuation. On the other view, there are no such realities, and causation is itself merely conventional. Through contrasting the two views, we will assess the viability of tying individuation to causation, exploring the theoretic advantages and principle pitfalls. Full details
Byrne HouseAdd this to your calendar
11 March 201515:00

Dr. Mattia Galotti, University of London, Exeter PhD

SPA Research Seminar Full details
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18 March 201515:00

"Stress and the Midlife Crisis" - Prof Mark Jackson

Egenis seminar Full details
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29 April 201515:00

Dr Daniele Carrieri

Egenis seminar Full details
Byrne HouseAdd this to your calendar
6 May 201515:00

Prof. Rob Hagendijk, Amsterdam. Title tbc

SPA Research Seminar Full details
Building OneAdd this to your calendar
13 May 201515:00

Prf Steve Hinchliffe

Egenis seminar Full details
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20 May 201515:00

"Triebhaftes Fähigsein – Heidegger’s crypto-vitalist concept of organism" Dr Anne Sophie Spann (University of Exeter)

In his early lecture “The fundamental concepts of metaphysics” (1929/30), Heidegger develops a concept of organism which stresses the functional wholeness of organisms and the ontological priority and primitiveness of life. His arguments thereby heavily rely on ideas and experiments of Uexküll and Driesch. Nevertheless Heidegger denies being a vitalist. Instead, his concept of organism is meant to be an alternative not only to the mechanistic paradigm but also to contemporary versions of vitalism. In my talk, I want to explore whether Heidegger is right in telling us this. In particular, the key notion of the organism’s driven capacity (‘triebhaftes Fähigsein’) might make us worry about whether the difference to vitalism is actually as deep as Heidegger suggests. Full details
Byrne HouseAdd this to your calendar
3 June 201515:00

Dr. Sam Liao, Singapore/Leeds

SPA Research Seminar Full details
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10 June 201515:00

"Data sharing in low resource settings: a capabilities approach." - Dr Louise Bezuidenhout

Egenis seminar Full details
Byrne HouseAdd this to your calendar
17 June 201515:00

Dr Ginny Russell

Egenis seminar Full details
Byrne HouseAdd this to your calendar