Marked Women (eBook)
The Cultural Politics Of Cervical Cancer In Venezuela
Sobre o livro
Cervical cancer is the third leading cause of death among women in Venezuela, with poor and working-class women bearing the brunt of it. Doctors and public health officials regard promiscuity and poor hygienecoded indicators for low class, low culture, and bad moralsas risk factors for the disease.
Drawing on in-depth fieldwork conducted in two oncology hospitals in Caracas,Marked Women is an ethnography of women's experiences with cervical cancer, the doctors and nurses who treat them, and the public health officials and administrators who set up intervention programs to combat the disease. Rebecca G. Martínez contextualizes patient-doctor interactions within a historical arc of Venezuelan nationalism, modernity, neoliberalism, and Chavismo to understand the scientific, social, and political discourses surrounding the disease. The women, marked as deviant for their sexual transgressions, are not only characterized as engaging in unhygienic, uncultured, and promiscuous behaviors, but also become embodiments of these very behaviors. Ultimately,Marked Women explores how epidemiological risk is a socially, culturally, and historically embedded processand how this enables cervical cancer to stigmatize women as socially marginal, burdens on society, and threats to the "health" of the modern nation.