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While some theorists argue that medicine is caught in a relentless process of ‘geneticization’ and others offer a thesis of biomedicalization, there is still little research that explores how these effects are accomplished in practice. Joanna Latimer, whose groundbreaking ethnography on acute medicine gave us the social science classic The Conduct of Care, moves her focus from the bedside to the clinic in this in-depth study of genetic medicine.

Against current thinking that proselytises the rise of laboratory science, Professor Latimer shows how the genetic clinic is at the heart of the revolution in the new genetics. Tracing how work on the abnormal in an embryonic genetic science, dysmorphology, is changing our thinking about the normal, The Gene, the Clinic, and the Family charts new understandings about family, procreation and choice. Far from medicine experiencing the much-proclaimed ‘death of the clinic’, this book shows how medicine is both reasserting its status as a science and revitalising its dominance over society, not only for now but for societies in the future.

This book will appeal to students, scholars and professionals interested in medical sociology, science and technology studies, the anthropology of science, medical science and genetics, as well as genetic counselling.

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