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Living Factories: Biotechnology and the Unique Nature of Capitalism

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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Techniques of genetic engineering are changing the role of living things in the production process. From rabbits that produce human pharmaceuticals in their milk to plants that produce plastics and other building materials in their leaves, life itself is increasingly harnessed as a force of industry - a living factory. What do these cutting edge developments in biotechnology tell us about our relation to nature? Going beyond the usual focus on the ethics and risks surrounding genetically modified organisms, Kenneth Fish takes the emergence of living factories as an opportunity to revisit fundamental questions concerning the relation between human beings, technology, and the natural world. He examines the coincidence of the living factory metaphor in contemporary accounts of biotechnology and in the work of Karl Marx, who described the machine as "a mechanical monster whose body fills whole factories, and whose demonic powers ... burst forth in the fast and feverish whirl of its countless working organs." Weaving together accounts of biotechnology in the molecular- and cyber-sciences, corporate literature, and environmental sociology, Living Factories casts our contemporary relation to nature in a new light. Fish shows that living factories reveal the unique role of capitalism in infusing the forces of nature with conscious purpose subordinated to processes of commodification and accumulation, and that they give a new meaning, and urgency, to the liberation of the forces of production from the fetters of capital.

Synopsis:

How biotechnology is changing the definition of "life."

About the Author

CA

Product Details

ISBN:
9780773540842
Author:
Fish, Kenneth
Publisher:
McGill-Queen's University Press
Subject:
Biotechnology
Subject:
Health and Medicine-Medical Specialties
Edition Description:
Hardcover
Publication Date:
20130131
Binding:
HARDCOVER
Language:
English
Pages:
232

Related Subjects

Health and Self-Help » Health and Medicine » Medical Specialties
History and Social Science » Sociology » General
Reference » Science Reference » Philosophy of Science
Science and Mathematics » Biology » General

Living Factories: Biotechnology and the Unique Nature of Capitalism New Hardcover
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Product details 232 pages McGill-Queen's University Press - English 9780773540842 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by ,
How biotechnology is changing the definition of "life."
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