Commodified Bodies

Organ Transplantation and the Organ Trade

By Oliver Decker

© 2014 – Routledge

208 pages | 5 B/W Illus.

Purchasing Options:
Hardback: 9780415854832
pub: 2014-04-08
US Dollars$140.00
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About the Book

Commodified Bodies examines the social practice of organ transplantation and trafficking and scrutinises the increasingly neoliberal tendencies in the medical system. It analyses phenomena such as the denomination of human body parts as "raw materials" and "commodities," or the arguments used by the proponents for a free market solution. Moreover, it argues that modern medicine is still linked with its religious roots. The commodification of body parts is seen not as an imperialistic act of the market, but as the end of a historical process as the notion of "fetishism" links the market with the body. Marx’s concept of commodity fetishism and Sigmund Freud’s theory of the perverted use of objects are modified and adapted to the reconstruction of the joint beginnings of market and medicine.

Table of Contents

1. On the Social Psychology of Medicine 2. The Miraculous Leg Transplantation and the Veneration of Relics 3. Fetishism: Salvific Good, Commodity, Body 4. The Commodified Body

About the Author

Oliver Decker is a Member of the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Leipzig and Visiting Professor for Social and Organizational Psychology at the University of Siegen.

About the Series

Routledge Studies in Science, Technology and Society

Books in this series consider social science aspects of science studies. Authors discuss how science is socially situated and mediated, how science and technology are shaped by society and society by science and technology. Books will consider the social impact of new technologies.

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
SOC026000
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Sociology / General
SOC057000
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Disease & Health Issues