Not available in 2013/14
SO474      Half Unit
Bodies, Markets and Politics

This information is for the 2013/14 session.

Teacher responsible

Dr Carrie Friese S207


This course is available on the MSc in Economy, Risk and Society , MSc in Sociology and MSc in Sociology (Contemporary Social Thought. This course is available as an outside option to students on other programmes where regulations permit.

Course content

We are witnessing ever expanding economies in human and animal bodies and bodily parts in contemporary social life. These bioeconomies undergird much of bioscientific research along with biomedical care. These bioeconomies also facilitate the contemporary 'knowledge economy'. Gametes and embryos in assisted reproduction, embryos and cord blood in regenerative medicine, animals in experimental science, and humans in clinical trials are just a few examples of such bioeconomies. This course explores these economies in human and animal bodies and bodily parts, with a focus on corresponding regulatory and governance regimes. The course takes a distinctly global perspective, exploring how bioeconomies and bioregulation differ across national contexts. In the process, we will ask what kinds of capital are produced through bioeconomies and what kinds of citizens are being created in and through such exchanges.


10 hours of lectures and 10 hours of seminars in the LT.

Formative coursework

One formative essay of no more than 2000 words due Week 7 of the Lent Term.

Indicative reading

Almeling, Rene. 2011. Sex Cells: The Medical Market for Eggs and Sperm. University of California Press.
Callon, Michel, Pierre Lascoumes and Yannick Barthe. 2001. Acting in an Uncertain
World: An Essay on Technical Democracy. Trans: Graham Burchell.
Cambridge: MIT Press.
Melinda Cooper. 2008. Life as Surplus: Biotechnology and Capitalism in the Neoliberal Era. Washington University Press.
Franklin, Sarah and Celia Roberts. 2006. Born and Made: An Ethnography of Preimplantation Genetic Diagnosis. Princeton: Princeton University Press. Chapter 1, Pp 25-74.
Gottweis, Herbert, Brian Salter, and Catherine Waldby. 2009. The Global Politics of Human Embryonic Stem Cell Science: Regenerative Medicine in Transition. Edited by A. Webster and S. Wyatt, Health, Technology and Society Series. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.
Jasanoff, Sheila. 2005. Designs on Nature: Science and Democracy in Europe and the United States. Princeton: Princeton University Press.
Petryna, A. 2009. When Experiments Travel: Clinical Trials and the Global Search for Human Subjects. Princeton: Princeton University Press.
Reardon, Jenny. 2005. Race to the Finish: Identity and Governance in an Age of Genomics. Princeton: Princeton University Press. Chapter 6, Pp.126-156.
Thompson, Charis. 2013. Good Science: The Ethical Choreography of Stem Cell Research. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.
Waldby, Catherine and Mitchell, Robert. 2006. Tissue Economies: Blood, Organs,
and Cell Lines in Late Capitalism. Durham: Duke.


Essay (100%, 5000 words) in the LT.

Key facts

Department: Sociology

Total students 2012/13: Unavailable

Average class size 2012/13: Unavailable

Value: Half Unit

Guidelines for interpreting course guide information