Purpose – This chapter discusses the increased acceptance of biopolitical research by mainstream political science and examines the potential causes. It demonstrates that…
Purpose – This chapter discusses the increased acceptance of biopolitical research by mainstream political science and examines the potential causes. It demonstrates that the changing status of biopolitics is part of a more general pattern in academia, where biological explanations of social phenomena are increasingly viewed as acceptable and even necessary.
Design/methodology/approach – A brief review of the history of the literature of biopolitics with a content analysis of the three leading general-readership journals of political science and other measures of activity in biopolitics.
Findings – Political scientists until recently have not been receptive to the arguments advanced by proponents of biopolitics, but this resistance is weakening. This case for a more biologically oriented political science is more tenable now in part because of the groundwork done by the early generation of biopolitics scholars but mainly because of changing circumstances.
Purpose – This chapter is designed to acquaint readers with examples of and issues in graduate education in biology and politics.
Design/methodology/approach – The main method adopted is the case study. Several programs or suggestions of how a program might develop are provided.
Findings – There are several examples of graduate education in biology and politics. These illustrate how different departments carry out educating students in biology and politics. Approaches include a biology and politics track in a political science program or interdisciplinary collaborations.
Research limitations – There are only a handful of case studies. Considering how other programs work would be a useful future research initiative to pursue.
Purpose – Using Foucault's concepts of biopolitics and governmentality along with sociological constructions of risk, this chapter asks, “What definitions and procedures…
Purpose – Using Foucault's concepts of biopolitics and governmentality along with sociological constructions of risk, this chapter asks, “What definitions and procedures have states used in their legislation about FAS to justify state intervention? What are the social and policy implications?”
Methodology/approach – Qualitative content analysis of state legislation enacted into law.
Findings – Against a backdrop of child abuse which justifies intervention, states use different techniques of biopolitics to secure governance over pregnant women and their developing fetuses, including (a) a social history of prenatal alcohol consumption; (b) a diagnosis of FAS in the child; and/or (c) a visible or measurable physiological characteristic of the newborn/child associated with FAS.
Social implications – This chapter extends the analysis of alcohol consumption by pregnant women to a policy level and examines central questions about the government's role in the biopolitical framing of prenatal alcohol use and the differential assignment of risk and responsibility.
Originality/value of chapter – This chapter contributes to work on maternal–fetal conflict, risk, and governmentality in women's reproductive health.