Managing superbugs and desire to belong in Latvia
(University of Leeds)
Paper short abstract:
This paper explores how Latvian health specialists engage with globalized forms of governmentality in managing growing antibiotic resistance epidemic.
Paper long abstract:
Drawing on ethnographic work in Latvia, this paper explores how Latvian health specialists engage with globalized forms of governmentality in managing growing antibiotic resistance epidemic. For these specialists the international audits, practice algorithms, quality and safety indicators, surveillance systems operate not only as disciplinary technologies but also as instruments with discursive and materialized potentiality of relationships with various effects. These health professionals mobilize their work and themselves as governable entities as an attempt to establish presence and sense of belonging to imagined and institutionalized state, Europe and beyond. At the same time, engagement with these governance technologies allows to actively cultivate distance and detachment from other relationships (e.g., the Soviet past). Cutting undesired relationships and setting boundaries operate as another attempt to obtain presence in Europe's health arena and to move from category of 'almost-but-not-quite-European' into much desired category of 'fully-European'. Paradoxically, Latvian health professionals' desire to belong reproduces the coloniality of power between West and East Europe's spaces and subjects.
Global health collaborations and alignments