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Actor-networks and ambivalence - GENERAL-PRACTITIONERS IN THE UK CERVICAL SCREENING-PROGRAM

Singleton, Vicky and Michael, Michael (1993) Actor-networks and ambivalence - GENERAL-PRACTITIONERS IN THE UK CERVICAL SCREENING-PROGRAM. Social Studies of Science, 23 (2). pp. 227-264. ISSN 0306-3127

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Abstract

Actor-network theory has, until recently, narrated the co-evolution of science and society in terms of dramatic triumphs and betrayals. This paper attempts to incorporate 'ambivalence' into the process of enrolment and black-boxing so central to the construction and continuation of actor-networks. Though ambivalence towards one's own and others' attributed roles in the network would seem to threaten the integrity of a given network, we suggest that it might reinforce it. Drawing upon fieldwork on the UK Cervical Screening Programme (CSP), we show how General Practitioners seriously problematize their own roles and the black-boxed status of the Cervical Smear Test within the CSP network. However, we also show that it is this very problematization that serves to render the network durable and workable.

Item Type: Article
Journal or Publication Title: Social Studies of Science
Uncontrolled Keywords: INTERESTS ; SCIENCE ; CANCER
Subjects:
Departments: Faculty of Arts & Social Sciences > Sociology
Faculty of Arts & Social Sciences > Lancaster Institute for the Contemporary Arts
ID Code: 51638
Deposited By: ep_importer_pure
Deposited On: 29 Nov 2011 16:34
Refereed?: Yes
Published?: Published
Last Modified: 26 Jul 2012 19:55
Identification Number:
URI: http://eprints.lancs.ac.uk/id/eprint/51638

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