Friday, 14 October 2016

New book: Public Health and Private Wealth (S. Hodges and M. Rao, eds.)

Public Health and Private Wealth: Stem Cells, Surrogates, and Other Strategic Bodies 
Edited by Sarah Hodges and Mohan Rao, 2016, Oxford University Press
  • Presents a novel approach to the politics of health in modern India;
  • Cuts across studies of development and demography, research laboratories and the rural and urban poor;
  • Transcends traditional disciplinary boundaries, combining the methodologies of anthropologists, sociologists, health economists, science studies scholars and historians
Poverty whether as drain theory at the start of the twentieth century or through garibi hatao towards the end of those 100 yearswas the predominant economic, political, and social paradigm within which late colonial, nationalist and post-independence era science policy was constructed. Whether as critics of Indias poverty, or as architects of measures for its eradication, Indias commentators called on a broad framework of science both to diagnose and treat poverty. Yet, when we think of science in India today, this earlier priority of poverty eradication is now hard to find. Poverty eradication as a goal in itself seems to have fallen off Indias scientific agenda almost entirely. What accounts for this? This volume asks: Has the problem of poverty in India been solved? Or, has it become inconvenient alongside the rise of new narratives that frame India as a site of remarkable economic growth? Indeed, has there been a loss of faith in the ability of science to tackle poverty? Together, the essays in this volume explore the broader implications for the new role of science in India: as a driver of economic growth for India, rather than as a solution to the persistence of poverty.