Faculty Profile "" Anne Pollock - on Healthcare, Race, Heart Disease

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Rebecca Keane
Ivan Allen College of Liberal Arts
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404-894-1720
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Anne Pollock - on Healthcare, Race, Heart Disease

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A conversation with Anne Pollock ranges widely from how the American medical system came in to being and how it might have taken a different path, to why the first drug marketed by race failed; from the weakening business model for big pharmaceuticals, to why southerners are less healthy than northerners; and why we fear cancer when the odds of being killed by heart disease are much greater. These reveal the scope of her research on biomedicine and culture.

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A conversation with Anne Pollock ranges widely from how the American medical system came in to being and how it might have taken a different path, to why the first drug marketed by race failed; from the weakening business model for big pharmaceuticals, to why southerners are less healthy than northerners; and why we fear cancer when the odds of being killed by heart disease are much greater. These reveal the scope of her research on biomedicine and culture.

Pollock, an Assistant Professor in the School of Literature, Communication, and Culture, holds a PhD in the history and social study of science from MIT. She came to Georgia Tech in Fall 2008 after a year as a guest lecturer with the Rice University department of anthropology. Her interests center on the intersection of medical technologies and diagnostics with differentiated identities in the United States.

"The statistics of a disease don't capture how people feel about a disease. What interests me is how diseases become embroiled in larger stories about who we are - as Americans, and then also by categories like race, gender, and sexuality."

Pollock's current works focus on pharmaceuticals, race, and heart disease. She has completed a book manuscript Medicating Race: Heart Disease and Durable Preoccupations with Difference. The book examines race and cardiovascular disease in the 21st century and offers a new view of how early cardiologists understood diseases of modernity, the famous (and on-going) Framingham Heart Study, and both generic and branded drugs that have become enrolled in arguments about distinctly African American heart disease.

Pollock is excited about the range of possibilities for health research that are available across Georgia Tech and Atlanta. She has found colleagues with allied research interests at Emory, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Racism and Health Working Group, and Morehouse and the Association of Black Cardiologists. She is currently teaching students in Science, Technology, and Culture (STAC) and is looking forward to teaching the popular Biomedicine and Culture again in the Spring.

"Studying disease and society is exciting because it is relevant to larger debates. Bringing in history and social theory is an opportunity to push that conversation beyond common sense, to broaden the perspectives of students and hopefully far beyond."

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Ivan Allen College of Liberal Arts

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Institute and Campus, Student and Faculty
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Keywords
Disease, LCC, pharmaceuticals, Pollock, race
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  • Created By: Rebecca Keane
  • Workflow Status: Published
  • Created On: Aug 12, 2009 - 8:00pm
  • Last Updated: Oct 7, 2016 - 11:02pm