Social Studies of Science on: Repair, publics, and “body dirt”

A new paper by the Canada’s Waste Flow research group will be published in the June issue of Social Studies of Science (details below). The article Making Waste Management Public (or Falling Back to Sleep) is about how publics do (or don’t) assemble around waste as an issue. The paper is written by Dr. Myra Hird, Scott Lougheed, Dr. Kerry Rowe, and Cassandra Kuyvenhoven.

Discard Studies

The June edition of The Social Studies of Science has three articles of interest to discard studies (details below). Social Studies of Science, or Science and Technology Studies (STS), critically examines the social processes through which scientific and technical knowledge is created, evaluated, challenged, spread, accepted, refuted, transformed, and fit back into social relations and culture. STS and discard studies share the conviction that “waste” is not given in nature, but is created, and thus study processes of waste becoming. Following Mary Douglas’ idea that, “Where there is dirt there is system. Dirt is the by-product of a systematic ordering and classification of matter, in so far as ordering involves rejecting inappropriate elements” (1988: 36), both disciplines research how “systematic ordering,” “classifications of matter” and “inappropriate elements” are created and naturalized in social-technical systems. An important topic in both disciplines is how scientific and technical objects and forms of…

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