In The Public Life of the Fetal Sonogram, Janelle Taylor (Anthropology) analyzes ultrasound technology and imagery in its full sociocultural context. Drawing upon ethnographic research both within and beyond the medical setting, Taylor shows how ultrasound has entered into public consumer culture in the United States. Her book offers much-needed critical awareness regarding the ways in which ultrasound technology is profoundly social and political in the United States today.
Taylor’s research centers on issues at the intersection of sociocultural anthropology, medical anthropology, feminist anthropology, science studies, and cultural studies. Specifically, her research and writing has focused on cultural and political dimensions of ultrasound technology and imaging, the role and experience of “surrogate” decision makers in medical decision-making at the end of life, and how “culture” is understood and taught within medical education. Taylor is also the co-editor of Consuming Motherhood (2004). She is currently developing a new research project focusing on the role and the work of standardized patients in medical education.
Sponsored by the Simpson Center for the Humanities.