Chapter

The Dangers of Modernity: Neurology, Psychiatry, and the Effects of Modern Technology and a Modern Economy

Cyrus Schayegh

in Who Is Knowledgeable Is Strong

Published by University of California Press

Published in print March 2009 | ISBN: 9780520254473
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520943544 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1525/california/9780520254473.003.0005
The Dangers of Modernity: Neurology, Psychiatry, and the Effects of Modern Technology and a Modern Economy

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Specific biomedical sciences have not been passively received from Western countries. They can be described as being accurate in interaction with—and thus able to shed of light on—conditions seen to be necessary for and problems believed to be created by Iran's modernity. These interactive processes truly took off in the 1910s. They materialized into three focal points, which are known as “The Dangers of Modernity,” “Biopower,” and “The Self-Reliant Personality.” All three centered on managing physical, mental, and moral health. Individual and national vitality were the objectives of a strategy of “medicalizing” modernity, which formed part of a global pattern boosted in the nineteenth century and shaped by international hierarchies of power and modern knowledge. The modern middle class, the social agent acculturating biomedical sciences, had a decisive hand in shaping this medicalizing strategy. The problems and conditions of Iranian modernity were not simply objectively existing realities.

Keywords: biomedical sciences; modernity; vitality; hierarchies; medicalizing strategy

Chapter.  16285 words. 

Subjects: Asian History

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