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Official start of the interdisciplinary research network "Economies of Reproduction"

Dr. Nick Hopwood gives a public lecture at Humboldt-Universität on May 7, 2010

In the framework of the official start of the DFG approved network “Economies of Reproduction. Interdisciplinary Research on the Past and Present of Human Reproduction 1750-2010” Professor Nick Hopwood will give a public lecture titled "Human embryos, 1750–2010" at Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin on May 7, 2010. Human embryos now rival even genes as objects and subjects of hope and fear. This prominence in biomedicine and the wider culture is recent, but depends on innovations that go back to the end of the eighteenth century.

Dr. Nick Hopwood: "Human embryos, 1750–2010"
May 7 (Friday), 2010 at 6.30 p.m.
Main Building, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin
Unter den Linden 6, 10117 Berlin, Room: 3075

The lecture will offer a history from 1750 to the present. By highlighting disciplinary identities, work practices, media of communication and species politics, it will raise questions for histories of reproduction over the last 250 years.

Nick Hopwood is senior lecturer at the Department of History and Philosophy of Science, University of Cambridge where he teaches history of modern medicine and biology. It was only after his postdoctoral work in developmental biology when he came to history of science and medicine (MSc, London, 1992). Hopwood worked in the Cambridge HPS Department and at the Wellcome Institute for the History of Medicine before the appointment to his present position in 1998.

The network
Today’s developments are characterized by ever closer entanglements between the laboratory and the clinic, pharmaceutical business and stock markets. Stem cells, embryos and gametes not only constitute ethically contested research objects; they also figure centrally within different moral, biological, social and commercial economies. The network „Economies of Reproduction“ will pursue research on the historical and actual dimensions of human reproduction in the field of life sciences (medicine and biology) and their relationship to different but overlapping economies. 15 researchers from Germany, Austria, Switzerland, the UK and the United States will put their disciplinary backgrounds in the history of medicine and science, in social sciences, anthropology, health sciences and philosophy in dialog with each other. The joint intellectual aim of the network is to relate the historical development of concepts of procreation and reproduction to their specific political, historical and social contexts. The interdisciplinary dialog will allow to identify research desiderata and explore possible lines of research for a longue-durée-history of human reproduction and its relations with economies.

Dr. Michi Knecht
Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin
Institut für Europäische Ethnologie
Unter den Linden 6
10099 Berlin
P: 030 2093-4912