This paper describes elements of a decolonizing textual science study of the ‘thrifty gene’ theory. Grounded in the notion that the construction of scientific knowledge is deeply imbricated in cultural and historical contexts, this research uses the production of ‘thrifty gene’ theory as a case study to explore, to decolonize, and to clarify the potential implications of the current production of medical-genetic knowledge about Aboriginal bodies, health and wellness. Here I problematize the recently bourgeoning and uncritical linkages between evolutionary science, contemporary medical genetic research and Aboriginali peoples’ health in Canada.

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Decolonizing the thrifty gene theory

Jennifer Poudrier   University of Saskatchewan

This paper describes elements of a decolonizing textual science study of the ‘thrifty gene’ theory. Grounded in the notion that the construction of scientific knowledge is deeply imbricated in cultural and historical contexts, this research uses the production of ‘thrifty gene’ theory as a case study to explore, to decolonize, and to clarify the potential implications of the current production of medical-genetic knowledge about Aboriginal bodies, health and wellness. Here I problematize the recently bourgeoning and uncritical linkages between evolutionary science, contemporary medical genetic research and Aboriginali peoples’ health in Canada.

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