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Public Lecture by Dr. Lindsey McKay, Candidate for Tenure-Track position in Department of Social Sciences -SJ

Author: myUNB News

Posted on Mar 23, 2018

Category: News and Notices

UNB Saint John's Department of Social Science welcomes everyone to a public lecture by Dr. Lindsey McKay (candidate for a tenure-track position in Social Science) entitled, 'Becoming Medicine': Organ Donation and the Other Site of Politics on Tuesday, March 27 at 4 p.m. in Hazen Hall, 125.

How have body parts become objects of exchange? Why do the sick and dying in Canada face a persistent ‘organ shortage’? In this talk, Dr. McKay will address one way we have ‘become medicine’ as our organs and tissues, bodily fluids, waste products, and gestational capacity attain value and are exchanged as therapeutic tools or services used to heal or help other people.

She will use a political economy lens to argue that the societal emphasis on consent to organ donation as a solution to scarcity is not irrelevant but it is overstated and incomplete; and will provide a more fulsome conceptualization in its place. Her claim that organ exchange is a phenomenon enabled by a discourse of donation that shapes and deflects attention from another site of politics where alienability is contested, that is, the legitimacy and limits of recovering organs. The evidence she provides to support this claim draws on a case study of Ontario over fourteen years from 2000 to 2014. In this study Dr. McKay develops an original theorization inspired by economic, feminist, and postcolonial theories of commodification and ideology. Her methodological approaches include qualitative and mixed methods to analyze textual, interview and descriptive statistical evidence.

The broader implications of this research pivots away from the issue of consent, focuses on boundary pushing in the realm of alienability, the implications of a potential-recipient orientation, and highlights the paradoxical dependence of biomedicine on public health and neurological treatment failure.

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