CSSS organises a seminar by Sangeeta Chattoo

Event From Date: 
Tuesday, 27 November 2018
Event End Date: 
Tuesday, 27 November 2018
Event Title: 
CSSS organises a seminar by Sangeeta Chattoo
Event Details: 

Centre for the Study of Social Systems

School of Social Sciences


CSSS Colloquium


Sangeeta Chattoo

(Department of Sociology and Health Sciences, University of York, UK)


Will be presenting a paper on


Liquid Life, Therapeutic Milieu: Framing Genetic Disorders at the Margins of Prevention and Cure


Date & Time:  November 27, 2018 (Tuesday), 3.30 pm

Venue: CSSS Committee Room (No: 13), SSS-II

Abstract:  This paper attempts to understand the social and ethical implications for a notion of care posed by the framing of inherited/genetic disorders simultaneously within two public health registers of prevention and cure, using data from a multi-sited ethnographic case-study of thalassaemia in India.  I use the notion of a therapeutic milieu to first analyse how individual families negotiate the life-saving and life limiting process of blood transfusions as standard treatment; where the boundaries between the normal and the pathological, health and disease seem to fade.  A focus on the materiality of the disease and the milieu lead to two important questions: i) how do parents engage with ‘novel’ treatments, especially stem cell/ bone marrow transplant, promising a cure, and therapeutic risk?, and ii) in what ways might state subsidy for expensive transplants aimed at addressing inequalities in access to healthcare, paradoxically, further stratify and institute new (?) forms of inequalities through arbitrary/ bureaucratic norms about whose life can/can’t be saved. 

Bio:  Sangeeta Chattoo is a medical anthropologist and associate Professor/Senior Research Fellow, Department of Sociology, and Health Sciences, at University of York, UK.  An alumnus of D school, she taught at UWA, Perth, before moving to University of Leeds and then York. Sangeeta has a long standing interest in inequalities and health, with a special focus on race, ethnicity, citizenship and public policy; reproductive technologies, genetics, risk and global health; and South Asia. She is an editor for Frontiers /medical sociology (an open access online journal); and lead editor, 2nd edition: ‘Understanding ‘Race’ and Ethnicity: Theory, History, Policy and Practice (2019), Bristol: Policy Press.  Her project website and publications can be accessed at: 'Inherited blood disorders, globalisation and the promise of genomics: an Indian case-study'