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EGENIS seminar series: "Cultivating Bioscience Image: A New Approach to Understanding the Life Sciences and Life Science Education as Participatory Visualisation Process" David Hay (King's College London)

Egenis seminar series

In this paper I set out to challenge the firmly held assumption that bioscience research is a quest for knowledge and the imperative to change, develop, modify, and manipulate things. In its place I will advance a different thesis, one that situates researchers and their objects in a line of understanding. Without contesting the obvious association that bioscience is for human benefit: healthcare, economy, conservation, and the like, I will also assert that these potential gains are only half the story and that while this goes on, there is another current of research in which human and non-human sensitivities are being cultivated by the practice of research for different – more important – reasons.

Event details

Using research is Science Studies, including, most particularly, the contemporary analysis of French Sociologist Bruno Latour, but also linking his research to my own case studies in anatomy, cell biology, developmental neuroscience and laboratory chemistry, I will sketch the outlines of a pedagogy based on visualising hidden bioscience process. Turning to the work of artist Gemma Anderson with James Wakefield and Jon Dupré, here at Egenis, and introducing work by another Artist, Daksha Patel, in residence at King’s College London, I will describe how it possible to visualise research in the opposite direction from the one in which researchers might be seen to do things with material, so that instead, rich, complex and dynamic biological and chemical materials show themselves as cultivating the bodies, minds and feelings of the researchers who work with them. This approach – automatic in the field of bioscience – lends itself to pedagogy since it is the means by which researchers, students and the wider public/society can become more thoroughly involved with living matter. 

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