By Alex Preda
Reading the formation of medical wisdom in regards to the AIDS epidemic within the Eighties, Alex Preda highlights the metaphors, narratives, and classifications which framed medical hypotheses in regards to the nature of the infectious agent and its transmission. Preda compares those arguments with these utilized in the clinical research of SARS. He demonstrates how medical wisdom approximately epidemics is formed by way of cultural narratives and different types of social suggestion via a close evaluation of biomedical guides.
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Additional resources for Aids, Rhetoric, And Medical Knowledge
Since the ﬁrst report on “Pneumocystis pneumonia – Los Angeles” in the June 5, 1981 issue of the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (a date which has now gone down in history), a vast amount of medical literature has been published on the topic. The number of papers on AIDS in medical journals alone increased ninefold between 1983 and 1988. A considerable share of them have been published in a relatively small number of select medical journals, considered to publish at the cutting edge of medical research.
38 AIDS, Rhetoric, and Medical Knowledge study operates: I examine the movements of a large variety of medical representations and narratives and the speciﬁc practices through which they are constituted with respect to risk. The reader is thus provided with a double perspective: that of a network of models, representations, and narratives, on the one hand; on the other hand, the level of rhetorical practices producing them. Because the two are collocated, the study does not contain distinct chapters for each level but intends to recover the second from the ﬁrst; however, shifts between these two levels are marked by different analytical techniques.
Introduction 17 to an “enlightened” stage in the mid-1980s, as historians of medicine argue? Showing how this textual practice unfolds presupposes examining the genealogy (Foucault 1966, 1989) of scientiﬁc knowledge about AIDS, with which it is coextensive. This examination is based not on the assumption of something being produced by external forces, but on that of collocation of producer and products. At the same time, it presupposes examining the body of scientiﬁc knowledge by questioning its claims of unity and homogeneity, and its inconsistencies, contradictions, and fragmentation.