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Thursday, October 25, 2012

2012 Lewis Henry Morgan Lecture - University of Rochester - November 7th

2012 Lewis Henry Morgan Lecture - University of Rochester

The Department of Anthropology at the University of Rochester is
The 2012 Lewis Henry Morgan Lecture on Wednesday, November 7th at 7PM by
Professor Janet Carsten of the University of Edinburgh. The lecture will
titled: "The Social Life of Blood: Transfers and Flows in Malaysia."

This year’s lecture traces the ‘social life of blood’ as it passes
from the
bodies of donors and patients into clinical pathology labs for analysis or
screening. What kind of object is blood? How is it transformed from one
of substance into another? What is the source of its extraordinary range and
plasticity of meanings? And what can the anthropological analysis of its
symbolic power tell us about the nature of symbolism or about domaining
practices in contemporary life? At once bodily substance, biomedical
resource, diagnostic tool, as well as an unusually potent metaphor with a
heightened propensity to flow between different social domains, blood is a
paradoxical kind of object. The central thesis is that the remarkably
meanings of blood in a given cultural and historical location reveal
previously unexplored properties of kinship, politics, ethnicity,
science, and wider sociality. The argument is demonstrated through a
detailed ethnography of a specific nexus of sites in Malaysia, centering
hospital blood banks and clinical pathology labs in Penang in which blood is
collected and analyzed, and blood donation sites where blood is donated and

Contact Information: Department of Anthropology 585-275-8614/

All are welcome to attend the lecture.

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