Writing Radical Laboratory Animal Histories

  • Tone Druglitrø

Abstract

In recent years historians have called for a radical historicizing to broaden the perspectives, stories and actors that are usually made subjects of historical investigations. The appeals have mainly come from scholars that have been concerned with historicizing nature and human-nature relations. But what does radical historicizing entail and why do we need it? The article presents a reflexive review of current methods and perspectives in the social sciences and humanities that have affected my own engagement with the history of laboratory animals in Norway. It presents an argument for doing historiography that reflects contemporary scholarly concerns on representation. Rather than seeking to “give animals histories of their own” I propose that radical historicizing should include writing histories of the entanglement and disentanglement of humans and other things and beings. This does not then involve a shift to writing animal stories for the sake of animals, but to write stories where humans and animals are considered mutually shaped and affected by each other, and how these interactions have world-transforming effects.

References

Amsterdamska, O. 1990. Surely you are joking, Monsiuor Latour. Science, Technology and Human Values 15 (4): 495-504.

Asdal, K. 2003. The problematic nature of nature: The post-constructivist challenge to environmental history. History and Theory. Theme issue 42: 60-74.

Asdal, K. 2011. Politikkens natur – naturens politikk. Oslo: Universitetsforlaget.

Asdal, K. 2012. Contexts in Action – and the Future of the Past in STS. Science in Context 37 (4): 379-403

Asdal, K. et al 2010. Tekst og historie. Å lese tekster historisk. Oslo: Universitetsforlaget.

Clarke, A. 1987. Research materials and reproductive science in the United States, 1910-1940. In Physiology in the American Context edited by G. Geison. Bethesda MD: American Physiological Society.

Daston, L. 2009. Science Studies and the History of Science. Critical Inquiry, 35 (4): 798-813.

Dear, P. & Jasanoff, S. 2010. Dismantling Boundaries in Science and Technology Studies. Isis 101: 759-774.

Druglitrø, T. 2013. Motstand mot “forstanden”. Kontroversen om forsøksdyr i Norge på 1970-tallet. Materialisten.Tidsskrift for forskning, fagkritikk og teoretisk debatt 40 (3): XX

Druglitrø, T. 2012. Å skape en standard for velferd. Forsøksdyr i norsk biomedisin 1953-1986. PhD thesis. Oslo: Akademika Forlag.

Elam, M. 1999. Living Dangerously with Bruno Latour in a Hybrid World. Theory, Culture and Society 16 (4): 1-24.

Fox Keller, E. 1983. A Feeling for the Organism: The Life and Work of Barbara McClintock. San Francisco: W.H. Freeman and Company.

Fudge, E. 2002. A Left-Handed Blow: Writing the History of Animals.In Rothfels, N (ed.). Representing Animals, 3-18. Bloomington: Indiana University Press.

Fujimura, J. 1996. Crafting Science: A sociohistory of the quest for the genetics of cancer. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press.

Haraway, D. 2013. Multispecies Cosmopolitics. Staying with the Trouble. Paper given at the 2013 IHR Distinguished Lecture. Available from: http://vimeo.com/62081248

Haraway, D. 2008. When Species Meet. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.

Haraway, D. 1989. Primate Visions. Gender, race and nature in the world of modern science. New York and London: Routledge.

Haraway, D. 1988. Situated Knowledges: The Science Question in Feminism and the Privilege of Partial Perspective. Feminist Studies, 14 (3): 575-599.

Harbers, H. ed. 2005. Inside the Politics of Technology. Agency and Normativity in the Co-Production of Technology and Society. Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press.

Harrison, R. 1965. Animal Machines. The new factory farming industry. New York: Ballantine Books.

Holmberg & Ideland, M. 2009. Transgenic silences. The rhetoric of comparisons and transgenic mice as “ordinary treasures”. Biosocieties, 4 (2): 165-181.

Horst, M. & Irwin, A. 2010. Nations at Ease With Radical Knowledge: On Consensus, Consensusing and False Consensusness. Social Studies of Science 40, (1): 105-126.

Irwin, A. 2001. Constructing the scientific citizen: Science and democracy in the biosciences. Public Understanding of Science 10 (1): 1-18.

Jasanoff, S. 2000. Reconstructing the Past, Constructing the Present: Can Science Studies and the History of Science Live Happily Ever After?. Social Studies of Science, 30 (4): 621-631

Kirk, R. G. W. 2004. Reliable Science – Responsible Scientists: Constructing Standard Laboratory Animals in Britain c. 1919-1976. PhD thesis. London: University College London.

Kohler, R. 1994. The Lords of the Fly. Drosophila genetics and the experimental life. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.

Latour, B. 2005. Reassembling the Social. An introduction to actor-network-theory. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Latour, B. 1996. Aramis, or the love of technology. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press.

Law, J. 1994. Organizing Modernity. Oxford: Blackwell.

Lynch, M. 1988. Sacrifice and the Transformation of the Animal Body into a Scientific Object: Laboratory Culture and Ritual Practice in the Neurosciences. Social Studies of Science 18 (2): 265-289.

Mol, A. 2008. The logic of care. Health and the problem of patient choice. London: Routledge.

Mol, Moser & Pols 2010. Care in Practice. Tinkering in Homes, Clinics and Farms. Amsterdam: Transkript verlag.

Moser, I. 2011. Dementia and the Limits to Life: Anthropological Sensibilities, STS Interferences, and Possibilities for Action in Care. Science, Technology and Human Values 36 (5): 704-722.

Rader, K. 2004. Making Mice. Standardizing Animals for American Biomedical Research 1900-1955. New Jersey: Princeton University Press.

Tresselt, H. C. 2011. Keeping the Cares Together: How Animal Technicians Deal with Ethical Dilemmas in the Laboratory. Master thesis. Oslo: Centre for Development and the Environment (SUM)
Published
2016-12-01
Section
Peer-Reviewed Articles