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Picturing Personhood : Brain Scans and Biomedical Identity

Picturing Personhood : Brain Scans and Biomedical Identity - 04 edition

ISBN13: 978-0691113982

Cover of Picturing Personhood : Brain Scans and Biomedical Identity 04 (ISBN 978-0691113982)
ISBN13: 978-0691113982
ISBN10: 069111398X
Cover type: Paperback
Edition: 04
Copyright: 2004
Publisher: Princeton University Press
Published: 2004
International: No

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Picturing Personhood : Brain Scans and Biomedical Identity - 04 edition

ISBN13: 978-0691113982

Joseph Dumit

ISBN13: 978-0691113982
ISBN10: 069111398X
Cover type: Paperback
Edition: 04
Copyright: 2004
Publisher: Princeton University Press
Published: 2004
International: No
Summary

By showing us the human brain at work, PET (positron emission tomography) scans are subtly--and sometimes not so subtly--transforming how we think about our minds. Picturing Personhood follows this remarkable and expensive technology from the laboratory into the world and back. It examines how PET scans are created and how they are being called on to answer myriad questions with far-reaching implications: Is depression an observable brain disease? Are criminals insane? Do men and women think differently? Is rationality a function of the brain?

Based on interviews, media analysis, and participant observation at research labs and conferences, Joseph Dumit analyzes how assumptions designed into and read out of the experimental process reinforce specific notions about human nature. Such assumptions can enter the process at any turn, from selecting subjects and mathematical models to deciding which images to publish and how to color them. Once they leave the laboratory, PET scans shape social debates, influence courtroom outcomes, and have positive and negative consequences for people suffering mental illness. Dumit follows this complex story, demonstrating how brain scans, as scientific objects, contribute to our increasing social dependence on scientific authority.

The first book to examine the cultural ramifications of brain-imaging technology, Picturing Personhood is an unprecedented study that will influence both cultural studies and the growing field of science and technology studies.

Table of Contents

Chapter 1. Introduction
Interlude 1. Thinking about Reading
Chapter 2. Metaphors, Histories, and Visions of PET
Interlude 2. Reading Function
Chapter 3. Producing Brain Images of Mind
Interlude 3. Who Can Read Other Minds?
Chapter 4. Ways of Seeing Brains as Expert Images
Interlude 4. Reading into Images
Chapter 5. Traveling Images, Popularizing Brains
Interlude 5. Living One's Images
Chapter 6. Conclusion: Here Is a PET Image of a Person that Shows Depression

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