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The Body and The State: How The State Controls and Protects the Body

23rd Social Research Conference February 10-11, 2011

Struggles over control of our bodies, which have a long history, are as fierce now as they ever have been. For example, this is clearly evident in the heated debates over gay marriage, stem cell research, and the legitimacy of abortions. It is evident in the Islamic world where the law treats men and women differently. It is evident in India where the Dalit—"untouchables"—are discriminated against. Other contested questions include how we are cared for when ill, what in fact is an illness and what is not, how we die, what rights the state has over our bodies, what the relationship is between the individual body and the body politic, and what ways our understanding of gender affects public policy across the globe. A forum in which these issues are discussed is clearly a high priority.

 

While there are many forces at play in the struggles surrounding policies affecting our bodies, certainly religious institutions, markets, and the sciences are the principal ones. In fact, the body is a battlefield in which they are the central, though far from the only, actors competing for control. The signs of this struggle are nowhere more evident than in the debates about policies concerning the state's regulation and protection of the body, and the definition of what constitutes the "normal" body (e.g. is a pregnant body a "normal" body? Is a black body a "normal" one? Is a disabled body "normal"?). These forces clash and sometimes join together to define what the normal or healthy body is and what rights, privileges, and obligations are associated with it—a definition that has changed over time and varies among cultures (often differing between male and female) but is always contested. The diverse and changing understandings of what a "normal" body is lying at the heart of almost all the disagreements over how to control and protect our bodies and so is one of the underlying themes of the conference.

 

These forces also vie to define which behaviors are acceptable and legal and which are not, which aspects of the body are private and therefore not subject to the control of others, and which are not. They are at work in determining the ways in which bodies must be protected, whether by outlawing certain behaviors (like sodomy or smoking) or by mandating behaviors (like vaccination or circumcision) and they are at work when determining which bodies may be punished, tortured, or killed. In these and other ways, these forces, and others as well attempt to impose their ideas and norms on the rules governing our bodies and even to influence our perceptions of our own bodies and of our rights over them, for example, in the recent debate in the U.S. over who owns our genes. Moreover, because convictions about what is morally acceptable are so salient in matters concerning the body, questions arise about whose moral code will be enacted into public policy.

 

Therefore, we will ask how the various stakeholders attempt to influence policies so that they are consistent with their own views—whether these are religious groups, pharmaceutical companies, media markets, or political action groups. In short, the proposed conference will focus on the body as a human rights arena in which many forces struggle for control and will explore their range and effectiveness, particularly as they work toward expression in public policy and political actions in the U.S. and in other countries around the world.

 

This conference is made possible by generous support from the Ford Foundation and the Arcus Foundation.

 

To order the related issue of Social Research: An International Quarterly

The Body and The State: How the State Controls and Protects the Body, Part 1  Vol. 78, Nos. 2 (Summer 2011) 

The Body and The State: How the State Controls and Protects the Body, Part II, Vol. 78 No. 3 (Fall 2011)

PROGRAM

THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 10


KEYNOTE ADDRESS

THE TRACE. VIOLENCE, TRUTH, AND THE POLITICS OF THE BODY
Didier Fassin, MD, MPH, James D. Wolfensohn Professor, School of Social Science, Institute for Advanced Study; Director of Studies, Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales, Paris

Moderator: David Van Zandt, President of The New School

 

FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 11


Session I: CONCEPTIONS OF THE "NORMAL" BODY

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We all have our own ideas about what a "normal," "healthy" body is, but these ideas are neither given nor based on some eternal biological definition. Rather, they reflect many different forces within a culture and they change over time. How do these views influence public policy in different locations? How do social dynamics affect conceptions of maleness and femaleness and how do they differ in different societies?

RELIGION 
Religions exert powerful pressure on how the conception of the normal or morally acceptable body is understood. How do images of the normal body differ across religious traditions? Case studies are reviewed on the role of religion in affecting state policy with regard to the body.

Joan’s Two Bodies: Was Joan of Arc Killed by the Church or the State and Does it Matter?
Winnifred F. Sullivan, Member, School of Social Science, Institute for Advanced Study; Associate Professor, Director of the Law and Religion program, University at Buffalo Law School

Ascribing Citizenship on the Muslim Body 
John Bowen, Dunbar-Van Cleve Professor in Arts and Sciences, Department of Anthropology, Washington University, St. Louis

MEDICINE AND BIOLOGY
Notions of the "healthy," "normal" body often bring with them the imprimatur of science. What role does science play in our understanding of what is normal and what is not? How are these understandings reflected in policy? Does this science-policy interplay differ across cultures?

The Body as a Biological and Genetic Entity
Elof Axel Carlson, Distinguished Teaching Professor Emeritus in the Department of Biochemistry and Cell Biology, Stony Brook University

Bodies of Rights and Biomedical Markets
João Biehl, Professor of Anthropology, Co-director, Program in Global Health and Health Policy, Princeton University

THE CITIZEN 
What is the relationship between individual bodies and the body politic? What constitutes the "normal" body of the citizen, and does this vary from country to country? What does the foreigner, the non-citizen, reveal about the body of the citizen? Do existing laws and policies differentially shape certain types of bodies and affect genders and races differently? Why does the health of the citizen matter?

Disability and the Normal Body of the Citizen
Susan Schweik, Professor, Associate Dean of Arts and Humanities, University of California, Berkeley

Making Willing Bodies: Manufacturing Consent Among Prisoners and Soldiers
Bernard E. Harcourt, Julius Kreeger Professor of Law and Professor of Political Science, University of Chicago

THE MEDIA 
Advertising, film, television, and the internet have profound impacts on our idea of the "normal" body and how it is or should be treated. What is the media's impact on policy with regard to the body? How does this vary across cultures?

Losing Bodies
Susie Orbach, Visiting Professor, Sociology, London School of Economics

Indian Cinema and the Beautiful Body
Sumita S. Chakravarty, Associate Professor of Culture and Media, Eugene Lang College The New School for Liberal Arts

Moderator: Ann Stoler, Willy Brandt Distinguished University Professor of Anthropology and Historical Studies, The New School for Social Research


Session II: THE SEXUAL BODY

 

 

 


How do various forces compete to impose their conception of what is "normal" sexual behavior? How do we come to see particular sexual practices as legitimate (or not) and therefore legally acceptable? Cross-cultural comparisons and case studies.

HISTORY 
Understandings of gender and the sexual body change. These changes are reflected in art, literature, and myth, as well as in policy. What can the history of discourse about the sexed body contribute to contemporary discussions about policy questions concerning sexuality?

God’s Body: Historical Conflicts over the Representation of the Sexual Body of the Hindu God Shiva
Wendy Doniger, Mircea Eliade Distinguished Service Professor of the History of Religions, University of Chicago Divinity School

Does Sexuality Exist Without the State?
Sharon Marcus, Orlando Harriman Professor of English, Columbia University

GENDER 
What are the policy implications of the forces shaping contemporary understandings of gender and the male or female body, including feminism, transsexuality, genital mutilation, and debates about gender and biology? Is a gender-neutral legal system possible?

Verdicts of Science, Rulings of Faith: Transgender/Sexuality in Contemporary Iran
Afsaneh Najmabadi, Francis Lee Higginson Professor of History and of Studies of Women, Gender, and Sexuality, Harvard University

Securing Gender: States, Bodies, and Identity Verification
Paisley Currah, Associate Professor, Department of Political Science, Brooklyn College, City University of New York (Paper co-authored by Tara Mulqueen)

RACE AND CLASS 
Race and class are often tied to reproductive rights, access to health care, and sexual violence (e.g. rape, human trafficking). How is the struggle for race and class justice connected to struggles surrounding policies concerning the body?

Body Politic, Bodies Impolitic
Charles W. Mills, John Evans Professor of Moral and Intellectual Philosophy, Northwestern University

Violence and Humanity: Or, Thinking Vulnerability as Political Subjectivity 
Anupama Rao, Associate Professor of South Asian History, History Department, Barnard College

SEXUAL BEHAVIOR
Who we are, what we do, and with whom affect how sexual behavior is controlled and judged. How does this play out in different cultures and legal systems?

Sexual Orientations, Rights and the Body: Immutability, Essentialism, and Nativism
Edward Stein, Vice Dean, Professor of Law, and director of the program in Family Law, Policy, and Bioethics at Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law, Yeshiva University

Gender Pluralism: Muslim Southeast Asia Since Early Modern Times 
Michael G. Peletz, Professor, Department of Anthropology, Emory University

Moderator: William Hirst, Professor of Psychology, The New School for Social Research

 

SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 12


Session III: WHO HAS RIGHTS TO THE BODY?

 

 


The struggle over control of the body is fierce and sometimes violent, including questions about the beginning, sustaining, and ending of life to ways in which the state and quasi-state agencies can take possession of the body. How do these debates play out in public policy? How do rights—individual human rights and state-granted rights—factor into these struggles? How do these struggles and debates differ between cultures and legal systems?

REPRODUCTIVE RIGHTS 
What factors influence laws governing abortion and reproductive technologies? How does policy vary in different states and cultures?

Regulating the Reproductive Body in China
Susan Greenhalgh, Professor of Anthropology, University of California, Irvine

Reproductive Entanglements: Assistive Reproductive Technologies as Optics for Viewing the Regulation of Child-Bearing
Rayna Rapp, Professor of Anthropology, New York University

SUSTAINING AND ENDING LIFE 
Who has access to health care? When is ending life justified?

Irony Awaits: Neuroscience, Consciousness, and the Right to Die
Joseph Fins, M.D., E. William Davis, Jr. M.D. Professor of Medical Ethics; Chief, Division of Medical Ethics; Professor of Medicine, Public Health, and Medicine in Psychiatry, Weill Cornell Medical College

Healthcare Reform 2.0
Steffie Woolhandler, M.D., M.P.H., Professor of Public Health, CUNY School of Public Health at Hunter College

POSSESSION AND PUNISHMENT OF THE BODY 
Under what conditions does the state take possession of the body or tacitly sanction another's taking ownership of an individual's body e.g. military service (both voluntary and forced), quasi-state terrorist organizations, slavery, and imprisonment? How are systems of detention and punishment used to govern both citizens and noncitizens? What forces are at play when the state employs the calculated application of pain or capital punishment?

Torture and Dream of Reason
Paul W. Kahn, Robert W. Winner Professor of Law and the Humanities and Director, Orville H. Schell, Jr. Center for International Human Rights, Yale Law School

The Problem of the Body in Modern State Punishment
David Garland, Professor of Sociology, New York University School of Law

THE DEAD BODY

The Deep Time of the Dead
Thomas Walter Laqueur, Helen Fawcett Professor of History, University of California 

Appearing and Disappearing Bodies (Mexico 2010) 
Claudio Lomnitz, Director, Center for the Study of Race and Ethnicity, Professor, Columbia University

Moderator: Ann Snitow, Associate Professor, Literature and Gender Studies, Eugene Lang College The New School for Liberal Arts 


Session IV: BUYING AND SELLING THE BODY

 

 


Market forces have profound impacts on our idea of the body and how it is or should be treated. How do these forces operate, and how do they affect legislation with regard to the body? How do these forces differ in different social and cultural contexts? What is the impact of globalization on policy concerning bodies in the marketplace?

BODY PARTS
What factors are at work in allowing and policing sperm and egg donation, blood donation, organ trade, and market in body parts?

Intimate Markets in Biological Spaces
Michele Goodwin, Everett Fraser Professor in Law, University of Minnesota 
The Body of the Enemy: Organ Theft During Wartime, Conflict and Political Chaos
Nancy Scheper-Hughes, Chancellor's Professor in Medical Anthropology, University of California, Berkeley; Director, Organs Watch

BIOLOGICAL MARKERS: GENES AND DNA 
Who owns our genes? How is biological information controlled and used?

Perversion and Forensic Science: Fraudulent DNA Testimonies and the Danger of Bio Banks
Renata Salecl, Centennial Professor of Law, London School of Economics; Senior Research, Institute of Criminology, Faculty of Law, Ljubljana, Slovenia

Deconstructing and Reconstructing the Body in Research: the Different Lives of Specimens and Data
Pilar Ossorio, Associate Professor of Law and Bioethics, University of Wisconsin Law School

SEX TRAFFICKING/PROSTITUTION
Why and how do different governments respond to the sex trade both within their borders and transnationally? What are the arguments to legalize and regulate prostitution?

States of Contradiction: Ten Ways to Do Nothing About Trafficking While Pretending To
Carole S. Vance, Associate Clinical Professor of Sociomedical Sciences, Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia University

PHARMACEUTICAL INDUSTRY 
New products and technologies are continuously reshaping our conceptions of what is or is not a "normal" body, and their acceptability is governed differently in different countries. What is the role of the pharmaceutical industry concerning the testing and marketing of pharmaceuticals in the U.S. and elsewhere?

Evidence and Insecurity in the Global Clinical Trial
Adriana Petryna, Edmund J. and Louise W. Kahn Term Professor in Anthropology, University of Pennsylvania

Property, Rights, and the Constitution of Contemporary Indian Biomedicine: Notes from the Gleevec Case
Kaushik Sunder Rajan, Associate Professor of Anthropology, University of Chicago

Moderator: Katayoun Chamany, Associate Professor, Natural Sciences and Mathematics, Eugene Lang College The New School for Liberal Arts

 

SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 13

 

Metropolitan Musuem Tour: Intersections of the Body and the State Represented in Art

The Metropolitan Museum of Art hosts custom tours of diverse collections. For this conference, Elizabeth Kessler-Dimin of Princeton University will lead at a tour to illustrate how issues of control of the body and self-expression are represented in works of art dating from antiquity to the modern era. The tour will begin in the Greco-Roman galleries, where we will consider the role of the body in conveying democratic ideals. In the ancient Egyptian galleries, the tour will analyze sculptures of the female pharaoh, Hatshepsut, in terms of power and gender. Neoclassical interpretations of the body in painting and sculpture are next. Finally, the tour moves to the galleries of African art to explore use of the body to convey political importance in a modern nsiki power figure. 

BIOGRAPHIES

Speakers, Panelists, and Moderators

 

Joao Biehl is professor of Anthropology and co-director of the Program in Global Health and Health Policy at Princeton University. Before joining the Princeton faculty in 2001, Professor Biehl was a National Institute of Mental Health postdoctoral fellow at Harvard University. His publications include, Will to Live: AIDS Therapies and the Politics of Survival (Princeton University Press 2007) and Vita: Life in a Zone of Social Abandonment (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2005).

 

John Bowen, Dunbar-Van Cleve Professor in Arts & Sciences in the Department of Anthropology at Washington University in St. Louis, is director of the Pluralism, Politics, and Religion Initiative. In 2001 and again in 2009, he was Professeur invité at the École Pratique des Hautes Études, Paris, and in 2010, he is a visiting professor at the London School of Economics. He was a fellow of the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences in 1995-1996, a Carnegie Scholar in 2005-2006, and is a recipient of the Leverhulme Trust Award from the London School of Economics. He is author of many books, including, most recently, Can Islam Be French? Pluralism and Pragmatism in a Secularist State (Princeton University Press, 2009). The New Anthropology of Islam and Framing Muslims across Western Europe (he is senior editor of this collaborative volume) are forthcoming from Cambridge University Press.

 

Elof Axel Carlson, Distinguished Teaching Professor Emeritus in the Department of Biochemistry and Cell Biology at Stony Brook University, is a noted geneticist and historian of science. He has taught as a visiting professor at the University of Minnesota, San Diego State University, and Tougaloo College, and as McMurrin Visiting Professor at the University of Utah. His recent books include The Unfit: A History of a Bad Idea (2001), Mendel's Legacy: The Origin of Classical Genetics (2004), Times of Triumph, Times of Doubt: Science and the Battle for Public Trust (2006); and Neither Gods Nor Beasts: How Science is Changing Who We Think We Are (2008).

 

Sumita S. Chakravarty is an associate professor of Culture and Media at Eugene Lang College The New School for Liberal Arts. She joined the New School faculty in 1988, and was chair of the department from 2000 to 2008. She previously taught in the English department at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign and lectured at Lucknow University in India. Her books include National Identity in Indian Popular Cinema, 1947-1987 and The Enemy Within: The Films of Mrinal Sen. She was a member of Fulbright National Screening Committee for 2009-2010 and a recipient of the Social Science Research Council Advanced Research Grant for 1996-1997.

 

Katayoun Chamany is Associate Professor of Biology and the founder of the Interdisciplinary Science program of Eugene Lang College The New School for Liberal Arts, an undergraduate science program focused on teaching science in the context of society. Trained as geneticist and cell biologist, she uses a socio-political approach and case study method to teach courses in the area of infectious diseases, cell biology, genetics, and their associated technologies. She is the author of Cell Biology for Life, a collection of educational modules published by Garland publishing, recipient of the Distinguished University Teaching Award, an active member of the Faculty for the 21st Century of Project Kaleidoscope, and a national organization focused on undergraduate science education reform and serves as an ad-hoc reviewer for the National Center for Case Study Teaching in Science and the Life Sciences Education journal. As a Leadership Fellow for Science Education for New Civic Engagements and Responsibilities (SENCER) she has designed curricula centered on stem cell research using a feminist and social justice perspective. She received her PhD in Molecular and Cell Biology at the University of California, Berkeley in 1996.

 

Paisley Currah is an associate professor in the Department of Political Science at Brooklyn College, City University of New York. He works in the intersections of political theory, gender and sexuality studies, studies in law and society, LGBT studies, and transgender studies. He has widely written on the transgender rights movement. His current work investigates state constructions of sex for the purposes of recognition and national projects that use gender as a distributive mechanism. He recently co-authored "The State of Transgender Rights in the United States of America," a working paper written for and presented at a meeting of the Global Dialog on Sexual Health and Well Being, organized by the four regional National Sexuality Resource Centers and "The Transgender Rights Imaginary," published in Feminist and Queer Legal Theory.

Wendy Doniger, Mircea Eliade Distinguished Service Professor of the History of Religions at the University of Chicago Divinity School, also teaches in the Department of South Asian Languages and Civilizations, the Committee on Social Thought, and the College. Her research and teaching interests revolve around two basic areas, Hinduism and mythology. Her courses in mythology address themes in cross-cultural expanses, such as death, dreams, evil, horses, sex, and women; her courses in Hinduism cover a broad spectrum that, in addition to mythology, considers literature, law, gender, and psychology. Her books include The Hindus: An Alternative History (Penguin Press 2009) and Splitting the Difference: Gender and Myth in Ancient Greece and India (University of Chicago Press 1999).

 

Didier Fassin, M.D., M.P.H., is James D. Wolfensohn Professor School of Social Science at the Institute of Advanced Study. He is an anthropologist and a sociologist who has conducted field studies in Senegal, Ecuador, South Africa, and France. Trained as a physician in internal medicine and public health, he dedicated his early research to medical anthropology, illuminating important issues about the AIDS epidemic, social inequalities in health, and the changing landscape of global health. More recently, he has developed a new domain of inquiry he terms “political and moral anthropology,” analyzing the reformulation of injustice and violence as suffering and trauma, the expansion of an international humanitarian government, and the contradictions in the contemporary politics of life. His present project, a contribution to an anthropology of the state, explores the political and moral treatment of disadvantaged groups, including immigrants and refugees, through an ethnography of police, justice, and prison. Formally, he was vice president and professor at the Université Paris 13. he is director of studies at the École des Hautes Études en Science Sociales. His recent books include The Empire of Trauma. Inquiry into the Condition of Victims and When Bodies Remember. Experience and Politics of AIDS in Post-apartheid South Africa.

 

Joseph Fins, M.D., is chief of the Division of Medical Ethics at Weill Cornell Medical College, where he is a professor of Medicine, professor of Public Health, and professor of Medicine in Psychiatry. Dr. Fins is also director of medical ethics at New York-Presbyterian Weill Cornell Medical Center and a member of the adjunct faculty of Rockefeller University and a senior attending physician at the Rockefeller University Hospital. His honors include a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Investigator Award in Health Policy Research, a Faculty Scholars Award from the Soros Open Society Institute Project on Death in America, a Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation Visiting Fellowship. He receives support from the Dana and Buster Foundations. He was appointed by President Clinton to the White House Commission on Complementary and Alternative Medicine Policy and currently serves on the New York State Task Force on Life and the Law by gubernatorial appointment.

 

David Garland is a professor of Sociology and Law at New York University and is considered one of the world's leading sociologists of crime and punishment. He joined the New York University School of Law faculty in 1997. He was previously on the faculty of Edinburgh University's Law School, where he taught since 1979 and was appointed to a personal chair in 1992. At New York University, he holds a joint appointment as professor of sociology in the College of Arts and Sciences, where he teaches graduate classes in social theory and an undergraduate course in criminology. He is the author of several prize-winning studies, including Punishment and Modern Society: A Study in Social Theory, which won distinguished book awards from the American Sociological Association and the Society for the Study of Social Problems, and Punishment and Welfare: The History of Penal Strategies, which won the International Society of Criminology's prize for best study over a five-year period. His last book, The Culture of Control: Crime and Social Order in Contemporary Society, published by University of Chicago Press in February 2001, has been translated into Italian, Spanish, and Chinese. He was a visiting reader at Leuven University in Belgium in 1983, a Davis Fellow in Princeton University's history department in 1984-1985, and a visiting professor at the University of California at Berkeley Boalt Law School in 1985 and 1988. In 1993 he was awarded the Sellin-Glueck Prize by the American Society of Criminology for distinguished scholarly contributions to criminology by a non-American scholar.

 

Susan Greenhalgh is a professor of Anthropology at the University of California at Irvine. The concern of her recent work has been to understand Chinese projects of modernity/globality (state efforts to transform China's "backward masses" into the modern workers and citizens needed to make China a prosperous, globally prominent nation) and their effects on China's society, culture, politics, and global standing. Her empirical focus has been the Chinese state's project to optimize the size and "quality" of its population by limiting all couples to one child. Apart from the basic policy of economic reform and opening up, no policy has been more consequential to reform-era China than the one-child policy. Her interests in the social dimensions of China's global rise are reflected in three recent books: Population and the Rise of Global China (Harvard University Press, 2010), Just One Child: Science and Policy in Deng's China (University of California Press, 2008), Governing China's Population: From Leninist to Neoliberal Biopolitics (with Edwin A. Winckler, Stanford University Press, 2005).

 

Michele Goodwin is Everett Fraser Professor in Law at the University of Minnesota. She holds joint appointments at the University of Minnesota Medical School and the University of Minnesota School of Public Health. She has been a visiting professor at the University of Chicago and a visiting scholar at the University of California at Berkeley. She was honored with a Distinguished Visiting Professorship by Griffith University in Australia. Professor Goodwin was a Gilder-Lehrman post-doctoral fellow at Yale University. Her writings on baby markets, judicial formalism, law and status, organ procurement, assisted reproduction, reproductive politics, family immunity in tort law, and patient negligence, appear in journals published by the University of Chicago, University of Michigan, George Washington University, Duke University, University of Virginia, University of Alabama, Barnard College, and many others. Her books include Black Markets: The Supply and Demand of Human Body Parts (Cambridge University Press, 2006) and Baby Markets (Cambridge University Press, 2009).

 

Bernard E. Harcourt is Julius Kreeger Professor of Law and Professor of Political Science at the University of Chicago. Professor Harcourt's scholarship intersects social and political theory, the sociology of punishment, criminal law and procedure, and criminology. He is author of Against Prediction: Punishing and Policing in an Actuarial Age (University of Chicago Press 2007) and Illusion of Order: The False Promise of Broken-Windows Policing (Harvard University Press 2001).

 

William Hirst is a psychology professor at The New School for Social Research in New York. He teaches cognitive psychology, research methods in cognition and communication, and collective and autobiographical memory and their contribution to identity. He has a PhD is from Cornell University and a bachelor's degree from Carnegie-Mellon University. His research interests are cognitive science; cognitive neuroscience (especially memory and attention); and social remembering. His recent publications include "Long-term retention of the terrorist attack of 9/11," Journal of Experimental Psychology: General (2009); "Silence is not golden: A case for socially-shared retrieval-induced forgetting," in Psychological Science (2007); and "Towards a psychology of collective memory," in Memory (2008).

 

Paul W. Kahn is Robert W. Winner Professor of Law and the Humanities, and director of the Orville H. Schell, Jr. Center for International Human Rights at Yale Law School. Professor Kahn teaches constitutional law and theory, international law, cultural theory, and philosophy. Before coming to Yale in 1985, he clerked for Justice White in the United States Supreme Court and practiced law in Washington, D.C.; he was a member of a legal team that represented Nicaragua before the International Court of Justice. He is the author of Legitimacy and History: Self-Government in American Constitutional Theory; The Reign of Law: Marbury v. Madison and the Construction of America; The Cultural Study of Law: Reconstructing Legal Scholarship; Law and Love: The Trials of King Lear; Putting Liberalism in its Place; Out of Eden: Adam and Eve and the Problem of Evil; and Sacred Violence: Torture, Terror, and Sovereignty.

 

Thomas Walter Laqueur is Helen Fawcett Professor of History at the University of California, where he writes about and teaches European cultural history. He is a regular contributor to the London Review of Books. His writings about the dead include " Unquiet Bodies" in the London Review of Books; "Places of the dead in modernity" in The Age of Cultural Revolutions: Britain and France, 1750-1820 (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2002); and "The Dead Body and Human Rights" in The Body (Cambridge University Press, 2002). He is currently completing a book to be titled The Work of the Dead.

 

Claudio Lomnitz is the director of the Center for the Study of Race and Ethnicity and professor of Anthropology at Columbia University. He is editor of the journal Public Culture. He is currently working on the historical anthropology of crisis and is the author of Death and the Idea of Mexico (Zone Books, 2005), a political and cultural history from the 16th to the 21st centuries.

Charles W. Mills is John Evans Professor of Moral and Intellectual Philosophy at Northwestern University. He earned his PhD at the University of Toronto and works in the general area of social and political philosophy, particularly in oppositional political theory as centered on class, gender, and race. In recent years, he has focused on race and has written numerous articles and book chapter and four books. His first book, The Racial Contract (Cornell University, 1997), won a Myers Outstanding Book Award for the study of bigotry and human rights in North America, and his second book, Blackness Visible: Essays on Philosophy and Race (Cornell University, 1998), was a finalist for most important North American work in social philosophy of that year. His most recent book, Contract and Domination (Polity Press, 2007), co-authored with Carole Pateman, who wrote The Sexual Contract (Stanford University Press, 1988), seeks to bring the social and sexual "contracts" together. He is currently working on a collection of his Caribbean essays to be titled Radical Theory, Caribbean Reality: Race, Class, and Social Domination. Before going to Northwestern, Professor Mills taught at the University of Illinois at Chicago, where he was a UIC Distinguished Professor.

 

Sharon Marcus is Orlando Harriman Professor of English at Columbia University. She specializes in 19th-century British and French literature and culture and has taught courses on the novel, Victorian genres, narrative theory, Oscar Wilde, theories of gender and sexuality, the city in 19th-century literature, and the year 1857 in England and France. Her first book, Apartment Stories: City and Home in Nineteenth-Century Paris and London (University of California Press, 1999), won honorable mention for the MLA Scaglione Prize for best book in comparative literature. Her second book, Between Women: Friendship, Desire, and Marriage in Victorian England (Princeton, 2007), won the Perkins Prize for best study of narrative, the Albion prize for best book on Britain after 1800, the Alan Bray Memorial award for best book in queer studies, a Lambda Literary award for best book in LGBT studies, and has been translated into Spanish. With Stephen Best, she recently edited a special issue of Representations on "The Way We Read Now." She has published articles on Trollope, Charlotte Brontë, comparative sapphism, same-sex domesticity in Victorian England, Victorian fashion plates, Rosemary's Baby, sentimentality and cosmopolitanism in the writings of Anne Frank and Hannah Arendt, and the theory and practice of rape prevention, as well as methodological essays on comparative literature, queer studies, feminist criticism, and Victorian studies. She is the recipient of Fulbright, Woodrow Wilson, and ACLS fellowships, and, at Columbia, a Gerry Lenfest Distinguished Faculty Award. She is currently writing a book about theatrical celebrity in the nineteenth century.

 

Afsaneh Najmabadi is Francis Lee Higginson Professor of History and of Studies of Women, Gender, and Sexuality at Harvard University. Her last book, Women with Mustaches and Men without Beards: Gender and Sexual Anxieties of Iranian Modernity(Berkeley: University of California Press, 2005), received the 2005 Joan Kelly Memorial Prize from the American Historical Association. She is currently writing two new books, Sex in Change: Configurations of Sexuality and Gender in Contemporary Iran and Genus of Sex: How Jins Became Sex in Iran. Afsaneh and a team of Qajar dynasty (1785–1925) historians received a NEH grant to develop a comprehensive digital archive and website to preserve, link, and render accessible primary source materials related to the social and cultural history of women in Iran under the Qajars.

 

Pilar Ossorio is an associate professor of Law and Bioethics at the University of Wisconsin at Madison, and a faculty member in the Graduate Program in Population Health at UW. Previously, she was director of the genetics section at the Institute for Ethics at the American Medical Association and taught as an adjunct faculty member at the University of Chicago Law School. Dr. Ossorio is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), a member of the editorial board of the American Journal of Bioethics, chair of an NHGRI advisory group on ethical issues in large-scale gene sequencing, and a member of the University of Wisconsin institutional review board for health sciences research. She is a past member of AAAS Committee on Scientific Freedom and Responsibility, a past member of the National Cancer Policy Board (Institute of Medicine), and has been a member or chair of several working groups on genetics and ethics. Her recent articles include "About Face: Forensic Genetic Profiling for Race and Visible Traits" in the Journal of Law, Medicine & Ethics (in press) and "Race and Genetics: Controversies in Biomedical, Behavioral, and Forensic Sciences" in American Psychologist (with Troy Duster, 2005).

 

Susie Orbach, a psychotherapist, is a visiting professor of Sociology at the London School of Economics. She co-founded the Women's Therapy Centre in London and New York. She has been a consultant for the World Bank, NHS, and Unilever, and was co-originator of the Dove Campaign for Real Beauty. She has previously been a visiting scholar at The New School for Social Research. She is currently chair of the Relational School in the UK, a convener of Anybody, an organization that campaigns for body diversity, a founder member of ANTIDOTE, working for emotional literacy, and of Psychotherapists and Counselors for Social Responsibility. For ten years Susie Orbach had a column in The Guardian newspaper writing about emotions in public and private life. Her books include Bodies (Picador, 2009), On Eating (Penguin Books Ltd, 2002), and The Impossibility of Sex (Scribner, 1999).

 

Michael G. Peletz is Professor and Chair of Anthropology at Emory University. His specialties include social and cultural theory, gender, sexuality, kinship, law, religion (especially Islam), and modernity, particularly in Malaysia, Indonesia, and other parts of Southeast Asia and the Pacific Rim. His most recent book, Gender Pluralism: Southeast Asia Since Early Modern Times (published by Routledge) was designated by Choice as an Outstanding Academic Title for 2009. He is also the author of Islamic Modern: Religious Courts and Cultural Politics in Malaysia (Princeton University Press, 2002), and Reason and Passion: Representations of Gender in a Malay Society (University of California Press, 1996), and he is the editor (with Aihwa Ong) of Bewitching Women, Pious Men: Gender and Body Politics in Southeast Asia (University of California Press, 1995). Peletz is the recipient of fellowships and grants from the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, the National Endowment for the Humanities, the National Humanities Center, the Social Science Research Council, the Wenner-Gren Foundation for Anthropological Research, the National Science Foundation, and the Erasmus Institute at the University of Notre Dame. He is currently working on a large-scale collaborative project entitled "'Ordinary Muslims' in Asia and the West."

 

Adriana Petryna is Edmund J. and Louise W. Kahn Term Professor in Anthropology at the University of Pennsylvania. Her research addresses the social dimensions of scientific knowledge in contexts of crisis and in U.S.-based pharmaceutical research. She is the author of Life Exposed: Biological Citizens after Chernobyl (Princeton, 2002) and the coeditor of Global Pharmaceuticals: Ethics, Markets, Practices (Duke, 2006). Her book, When Experiments Travel: Clinical Trials and the Global Search for Human Subjects (Princeton, 2009), explores patient protections in the context of global clinical trials.

 

Kaushik Sunder Rajan is associate professor of Anthropology at the University of California at Irvine. He is author of Biocapital: The Constitution of Postgenomic Life, a multi-sited ethnography of emergent genomic research and drug development marketplaces in the United States and India (2006) and Biosocialities, Genetics and the Social Sciences: Making Biologies and Identities (2007).

 

Anupama Rao is associate professor of History at Barnard College, Columbia University. Her research and teaching interests are in the history of anticolonialism; gender and sexuality studies; intersections of caste and race; social theory, and colonial genealogies of human rights and humanitarianism. Her book, The Caste Question (University of California Press, 2009) theorizes caste subalternity, with specific focus on the role of anti-caste thought (and its thinkers) in producing alternative genealogies of the political subject in colonial and postcolonial India. She has also written on colonialism and humanitarianism and on non-Western histories of gender and sexuality. Recent publications include Discipline and the Other Body (Duke University Press, 2006); "Death of a Kotwal: Injury and the Politics of Recognition," Subaltern Studies XII; Violence, Vulnerability and Embodiment (co-editor, special issues of Gender and History, 2004), and Gender and Caste: Issues in Indian Feminism (Kali for Women, 2003). She is currently working on a book entitled Dalit Bombay, on the relationship between outcaste labor, political culture, and everyday life in colonial and postcolonial Bombay.

 

Rayna Rapp is professor of Anthropology at New York University. Her areas of research are gender, reproduction, health and culture, and science and technology in the U.S. and Europe. She is the author of Testing Women, Testing the Fetus: The Social Impact of Amniocentesis in America (Routledge, 2000). Her recent articles include "Genetic Citizenship" and "Gender, Body, Biomedicine: How Some Feminist Concerns Dragged Reproduction to the Center of Social Theory" in Medical Anthropology Quarterly.

 

Renata Salecl teaches law at the University of Ljubljana in her native Slovenia and was the Centennial Professor in the Department of Law at the London School of Economics. She is a frequent visitor to Cardozo Law School of Yeshiva University, teaching and collaborating on conferences. As a member of several think tanks, including the Remarque Institute, as worked to develop policies for Slovenia with respect to women's rights, maternity leave, and in-vitro fertilization. Her many books and articles include (Per) Versions of Love and Hate, (1998, Verso), which has been translated into German, Russian, Spanish, French, Korean, and Serbo-Croation. Her most recent book, On Anxiety (2004, Routledge), has been translated into Portuguese and Turkish. Her current research interests include China's developing cloning industry.

 

Nancy Scheper-Hughes is Chancellor's Professor in Medical Anthropology and head of the doctoral program in Medical Anthropology at the University of California at Berkeley. She is the director of Organs Watch and co-founder of the Organs Watch Project. Her research, writings, and teaching focus on violence, suffering, and premature death as these are experienced on the margins and peripheries of the late modern world, and include a multi-sited ethnographic and medical human rights oriented study of the global traffic in humans (living and dead) to provide organs for international organ transplant patients. Concern about the role of new markets in the transfer of transplant technologies resulted in her book Commodifying Bodies, co-edited with Loic Wacquant (2002, Sage). Her forthcoming book is titled A World Cut in Two: Global Justice and the Traffic in Organs (University of California Press).

 

Susan Schweik is professor and associate dean of Arts and Humanities at the University of California at Berkeley. She is the recent recipient of the Chancellor's Award for Advancing Institutional Excellence. A former Presidential Chair in Undergraduate Education for Disability Studies at UC, she has been involved in the development of disability studies at Berkeley for nine years. She was co-coordinator of the Ed Roberts Fellowships in Disability Studies (a post-doctoral program at Berkeley coordinated by the Institute for Urban and Regional Development). She has taught and co-taught undergraduate courses in Disability and Literature, Discourses of Disability, the Disability Rights Movement, Disability and Digital Storytelling, Psychiatric Disability, Literature and Medicine, and Race, Ethnicity and Disability, and graduate courses in Body Theory and Disability Studies and Advanced Disability Studies. Her other teaching and research interests include 20th-century poetry, late 19th-century American literature, women's studies and gender theory, urban studies, war literature, and children's literature. She is a recipient of Berkeley's Distinguished Teaching Award. Her books include The Ugly Laws: Disability in Public (History of Disability) (New York University Press, 2009).

 

Ann Snitow is Associate Professor of Literature and Gender Studies at Eugene Lang The New School for Liberal Arts. Snitow has been a feminist activist since l969 when she was a founding member of New York Radical Feminists. She was co-editor of Powers of Desire: The Politics of Sexuality, a central text in U.S. debates about the historicity of sexual experience, and of The Feminist Memoir Project. She has written germinal articles about feminism. A founder of the Feminist Anti-Censorship Task Force, of the action group No More Nice Girls and of the Network of East-West Women (NEWW), her most recent writing and political work is about the changing situation of women in Eastern Europe.

 

Edward Stein is vice dean, professor of law, and director of the program in Family Law, Policy, and Bioethics at the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law, Yeshiva University. Before joining the Cardozo faculty, Professor Stein taught in the philosophy departments of Yale University, Mount Holyoke College, and New York University. In 2001-2002, he clerked for Judge Dolores Sloviter of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit. He is the author of numerous articles and books on legal, philosophical, and scientific topics, including The Mismeasure of Desire: The Science, Theory and Ethics of Sexual Orientation (Oxford University Press, 1999). His current research focuses on issues at the intersection of family law and sexual orientation, gender, and the law.

 

Ann Stoler is Willy Brandt Distinguished University Professor of Anthropology and Historical Studies at The New School for Social Research. She has been greatly influential in scholarship concerning knowledge, colonial encounters, postcolonial presents, critical race theory, histories of sentiment and sexuality, and historical ethnography. Stoler has authored many books and articles including the seminal work Carnal Knowledge and Imperial Power, which was released in its second edition in 2010.

 

Winnifred F. Sullivan is associate professor and director of the Law and Religion program at the University of Buffalo Law School. She studies the intersection of religion and law in the modern period, particularly the phenomenology of modern religion as it is shaped in its encounter with law. In addition to numerous articles, she is the author of Paying the Words Extra: Religious Discourse in the Supreme Court of the United States (Cambridge: Harvard University Center for the Study of World Religions, 1994), The Impossibility of Religious Freedom (Princeton, 2005) and Prison Religion: Faith-based Reform and the Constitution (Princeton, 2009). During the 2010-2011 academic year, she is a member of the School of Social Science at the Institute for Advanced Studies in Princeton, supported also by fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation and the American Council of Learned Societies.

 

Carole S. Vance is associate clinical professor of Sociomedical Sciences and Anthropology at Columbia University. For the past 10 years, she has directed a program on sexuality, gender, health and human rights that advances policy-relevant scholarship and facilitates exchanges between researchers and advocates on sexual health and rights issues. Dr. Vance is currently involved in research on trafficking into forced prostitution, also known as sex trafficking, with particular focus on the ways in which ethnographic research can inform policy and health and human rights interventions. Her most recent article, “Thinking Trafficking, Thinking Sex,” appeared in GLQ (2011). She edited the landmark collection, Pleasure and Danger: Exploring Female Sexuality (Harper Collins, 1993). In 2005, Dr. Vance received the David R. Kessler Award for lifetime contributions to studies of sexuality.

 

Stephanie Woolhandler, M.D., M.P.H., is Professor of Urban Public Health at the CUNY School of Public Health at Hunter College. She was previously professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School, where she was co-director of the general internal medicine fellowship program. She helped found Physicians for a National Health Program, a not-for-profit organization for physicians, medical students, and other health care professionals who advocate a national health insurance program. Dr. Woolhandler is a frequent speaker and has written extensively on health policy, administrative overhead, and the uninsured. She has authored more than 50 research articles on health care access and financing. She is a member of the American Public Health Association, the Society for General Internal Medicine, and the American College of Physicians, and she is a fellow of the National Academy of Social Insurance. In 2009, Dr. Woolhandler was named an honorary fellow by the University of Edinburgh. Also in 2009 she received the A. Clifford Barger Excellence in Mentoring award from Harvard Medical School.


David E. Van Zandt will be the eighth president of The New School. He was previously dean and professor of law at the Northwestern University School of Law. (Longer bio to come.)

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