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Spherologies of Immunisation

  • Nik Brown
Chapter

Abstract

Vaccination operates as yet another classic biopolitical dimension of contemporary immunitary life. In recent years, and in particular communities, thresholds of effective vaccination have fallen perilously below recent historic levels, leading to new infectious disease events and posing challenging questions for clinical bodies and government. However, the vaccination debate is only part of a wider picture in tensions between the community and the individual, between public policy and the population, between medical institutions and patients. The politics of vaccination has its roots in the Victorian period and articulates tensions between the laboring classes and ruling elites, together with competing notions of progressive modernity itself. ‘Anti-vaccination’, both as a diffuse phenomenon and as an organised movement, offers a unique opportunity to understand the shifting dimensions of immunitary politics over the course of a century and a half.

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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Nik Brown
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of SociologyUniversity of YorkYorkUK

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