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The Palgrave Handbook of Biology and Society

By: Maurizio Meloni(Editor), John Cromby(Editor), Des Fitzgerald(Editor), Stephanie Lloyd(Editor)
941 pages, 4 colour & 18 b/w illustrations
Publisher: Palgrave
The Palgrave Handbook of Biology and Society
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  • The Palgrave Handbook of Biology and Society ISBN: 9781137528780 Hardback Mar 2018 Not in stock: Usually dispatched within 1-2 weeks
Price: £175.50
About this book Contents Customer reviews Biography Related titles

About this book

This comprehensive handbook synthesizes the often-fractured relationship between the study of biology and the study of society. Bringing together a compelling array of interdisciplinary contributions, the authors demonstrate how nuanced attention to both the biological and social sciences opens up novel perspectives upon some of the most significant sociological, anthropological, philosophical and biological questions of our era.

The six sections cover topics ranging from genomics and epigenetics, to neuroscience and psychology to social epidemiology and medicine. The authors collaboratively present state-of-the-art research and perspectives in some of the most intriguing areas of what can be called biosocial and biocultural approaches, demonstrating how quickly we are moving beyond the acrimonious debates that characterized the border between biology and society for most of the twentieth century.

This landmark volume will be an extremely valuable resource for scholars and practitioners in all areas of the social and biological sciences.


INTRODUCTION BY THE EDITORS. Introducing the New Biosocial Landscape; Meloni, Cromby, Fitzgerald, and Lloyd

SECTION I: History of the Biology/Society Relationship
Chapter 1. Models, Metaphors, Lamarckisms and the Emergence of `Scientific Sociology'; Snait Gissis
Chapter 2. The transcendence of the social: Durkheim, Weismann and the Purification of Sociology; Maurizio Meloni
Chapter 3. Biology, Social Science, and Population in Late Nineteenth- and Early Twentieth-Century Britain; Chris Renwick
Chapter 4. The concept of plasticity in the history of the nature-nurture debate in the early 20th century; Antonine Nicoglou
Chapter 5. An Evolving, Evolutionary Science of Human Differences; Jonathan Marks
Chapter 6. Experimenting in the Biosocial: The Strange Case of Twin Research; Will Viney
Chapter 7. Histories and meanings of Epigenetics; Tatjana Buklijas

SECTION II. Genomics, Postgenomics, Epigenetics and Society
Chapter 8. Scrutinizing the Epigenetics Revolution; Maurizio Meloni and Giuseppe Testa,
Chapter 9. Social & Behavioral Epigenetics: Evolving Perspectives on Nature-Nurture Interplay, Plasticity, and Inheritance; Frances Champagne
Chapter 10. Molecular Multicultures; Amy Hinterberger
Chapter 11. The First Thousand Days: Epigenetics in the Age of Global Health; Michelle Pentecost
Chapter 12. Genetics, epigenetics and social justice in education: learning as a complex biosocial phenomenon; Deborah Youdell
Chapter 13. Genetics, epigenetics and social justice in education: learning as a complex biosocial phenomenon; Sabina Leonelli

SECTION III. Neuroscience: brain, culture and social relations
Chapter 14. Proposal for a Critical Neuroscience; Jan Slaby and Suparna Choudhury
Chapter 15. On the Neurodisciplines of Culture; Fernando Vidal and Francisco Ortega
Chapter 16. Affective Neuroscience as Sociological Inquiry?; - Christian Von Scheve
Chapter 17. Mechanisms of Embodiment in Religious Belief and Practice: "Bio-looping" in Candomble Trance and Possession; Rebecca Seligman
Chapter 18. Experimental Entanglements: Social Science and Neuroscience beyond Interdisciplinarity; Des Fitzgerald and Felicity Callard
Chapter 19 Developing Schizophrenia; John Cromby
Chapter 20. Epigenetics and the suicidal brain: reconsidering context in an emergent style of reasoning; Stephanie Lloyd and Eugene Raikhel

SECTION IV. Social Epidemiology
Chapter 21. The embodiment dynamic over the lifecourse: a case for examining cancer aetiology; Michelle Kelly-Irving & Cyrille Delpierre
Chapter 22. Epigenetic signatures of socioeconomic status across the lifecourse; Silvia Stringhini and Paolo Vineis
Chapter 23. An intergenerational perspective on social inequality in health and life opportunities: the maternal capital model; Jonathan Wells and Akanksha Marphatia
Chapter 24. Quantifying social influences throughout the life-course: action, structure and `omics'; Mike Kelly and Rachel Kelly
Chapter 25 Health inequalities and the interplay of socioeconomic factors and health in the life course; Rasmus Hoffmann, Hannes Kroeger, Eduwin Pakpahan

SECTION V. Medicine and Society
Chapter 26. Universal Biology, Local Society? Notes from Anthropology; Patrick Bieler, Jorg Niewohner
Chapter 27. Big Data and Biomedicine; Nadine Levin
Chapter 28. Personalised and Precision Medicine: What kind of society does it take?; Barbara Prainsack
Chapter 29. Emergent postgenomic bodies and their (non)scalable environments; Megan Warin and Aryn Martin
Chapter 30. The vitality of disease; Ayo Wahlberg
Chapter 31. Bioethnography: A How-To Guide for the Twenty-First Century; Liz Roberts and Camilo Sanz

SECTION VI.Contested Sites/Future Perspectives
Chapter 32. The Postgenomic Politics of Race; Catherine Bliss
Chapter 33. Of Rats and Women: Narratives of Motherhood in Environmental Epigenetics; Martha Kenney and Ruth Muller
Chapter 34. Ancestors and Identities: DNA, Genealogy, and Stories; Jessica Bardill
Chapter 35. Species of Biocapital, 2008 and Speciating Biocapital, 2017; Stefan Helmreich with a postcript by Nicole Labruto
Chapter 36. Human Tendencies; Ed Cohen
Chapter 37. Ten theses on the subject of biology and politics: conceptual, methodological, and biopolitical considerations; Samantha Frost

Customer Reviews


Maurizio Meloni is a social theorist and a STS scholar at the University of Sheffield, UK. He is the author of Political Biology, A Postgenomic Body and co-editor of Biosocial Matters.

John Cromby is a psychologist at the University of Leicester, UK. He is a co-author of Psychology, Mental Health and Distress and author of Feeling Bodies: Embodying Psychology.

Des Fitzgerald is a sociologist and STS scholar at Cardiff University, UK. He is author of Tracing Autism: Uncertainty, Ambiguity and the Affective Labor of Neuroscience and co-author of Rethinking Interdisciplinarity Across the Social Sciences and Neurosciences.

Stephanie Lloyd is a medical anthropologist at the Université Laval, Canada. Her research examines the production of molecular models that attempt to link early experiences to specific behaviours and traits, with a particular focus on epigenetics and neurosciences.

By: Maurizio Meloni(Editor), John Cromby(Editor), Des Fitzgerald(Editor), Stephanie Lloyd(Editor)
941 pages, 4 colour & 18 b/w illustrations
Publisher: Palgrave
Media reviews

"This handbook attempts to bridge the traditional gap between social sciences and biological sciences, serving as a comprehensive overview that incorporates both. [...] This handbook is highly recommended for academic libraries."
American Reference Books Annual ARBA, June, 2018

"A veritable tour de force, the thirty-seven chapters of a Handbook of Biology and Society delineate an epistemic space for our times among the life sciences and the social sciences. Biological matter is fully social in both form and content and, reciprocally, sociality is enabled and modulated through and through by biology in its many configurations. All traces of dichotomous 20th century debates about biology and society are transcended in the five sections of the handbook that commence with history and culminate in 'contested sites' including those of race, gender, and class. No longer can humans be represented as independent of their environments; recognition of the reactive genome has made this evident at the molecular level. These outstanding essays go further, and mesh lived experience with molecular activity, thus fleshing out the mobility of biology and society."
– Margaret Lock PhD, author of The Alzheimer' Conundrum

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