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Studying Those Who Study Us


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Table of Contents

Editor's introduction; Editor's note; 1. Blaming the user in medical informatics: the cultural nature of scientific practice; 2. The construction of work in artificial intelligence; 3. Engineering knowledge: the construction of knowledge in artificial intelligence; 4. Knowing engineers? A response to Forsythe; 5. STS (Re)constructs anthropology: reply to Fleck; 6. Artificial intelligence invents itself: collective identity and boundary maintenance in an emergent scientific discipline; 7. New bottles, old wine: hidden cultural assumptions in a computerized explanation system for migrane sufferers; 8. Ethics and politics of studying up in technoscience; 9. Studying those who study us: medical informatics appropriates ethnography; 10. 'It's just a matter of common sense': ethnography as invisible work; 11. Disappearing women in the social world of computing; 12. George and Sandra's daughter, Robert's girl: doing ethnographic research in my parents' field; Appendix; Notes; Bibliography; Index.

About the Author

The late Diana E. Forsythe was Associate Professor in the Medical Anthropology Program at the University of California, San Francisco, and a visiting scholar in the Program in Science, Technology, and Society at Stanford University.


"Diane Forsythe pioneered the field of the anthropology of artificial intelligence, and the essays in this collection are crucially important for three reasons. First, they have historical value as groundbreaking work in a new field. Second, they have enduring value for other scholars, notably the burgeoning number of social scientists studying computer cultures. And Forsythe's careful discussions of her methods, and the interesting reflexivity she worked out, will serve as important models for future anthropologists and others. The editor has done an outstanding job of selecting, ordering, and introducing the essays." - Paul N. Edwards, University of Michigan "The essays posthumously collected here are the fruits of the later career of a fine anthropologist and a sensitive, skilled ethnographer... Forsythe's collection will interest a broad audience concerned with the production of software and the behavior of teams. Highly and unreservedly recommended for all collections." - Choice "[A] thought-provoking book ...[It] reveals an intriguing insight into the tacit assumptions made in the fields of artificial intelligence and current anthropology." - Science Books and Film

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