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Nancy Scheper-Hughes Responds to Our Profile, ‘The Organ Detective’

The chair of the doctoral program in medical anthropology at the University of California-Berkeley was written about in the July/August issue of Pacific Standard.

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The Organ Detective: A Career Spent Uncovering a Hidden Global Market in Human Flesh

Tracking the organ trade, anthropologist Nancy Scheper-Hughes visited African and South American dialysis units, organ banks, police morgues, and hospitals. She interviewed surgeons, patient’s rights activists, pathologists, nephrologists, and nurses. So why aren’t more people listening to her?

Features

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Meet the Flexians

A new professional class of movers and shakers—people who serve overlapping roles in government, business, and media with smiling finesse—is controlling the flow of power and money in America. The anthropologist Janine Wedel is bent on making us understand just how dangerous this new normal can be.

 

The Pit House

Our multimedia presentation on the evolution of fairness continues with a visit to the reconstructed houses that saw the rise of a ‘transegalitarian’ society.

 

Charting Genomes: Old Hairs Create New Headaches

Two studies make similar strides in identifying how mankind came to populate the Earth, but their differing approaches to gathering and using samples open up ethical questions.

 

Law of the Jungle: Powerful Men Have More Children

Anthropologist Christopher von Rueden’s studies of a Bolivian tribe suggest that men’s instinctive drive for power is a strategy to seed their descendants thickly.

 

Comet Theory Comes Crashing to Earth

An elegant archaeological hypothesis, under fire for results that can’t be replicated, may ultimately come undone.

 

Forensics in Three Dimensions

For the first time, a tool allows researchers to identify the ancestry of the remains of children, which may help solve some forensic cold cases.

 

The Scrutable Asian

The Fox family of television networks is not exactly known for its subtle look at the nature of cultural difference.

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Sufferers of Social Anxiety Disorder, Your Friends Like You

The first study of friends' perceptions suggest they know something's off with their pals but like them just the same.

Standing Up for My Group by Kicking Yours

Members of a minority ethnic group are less likely to express support for gay equality if they believe their own group suffers from discrimination.

How Old Brains Learn New Tricks

A new study shows that the neural plasticity needed for learning doesn't vanish as we age—it just moves.

Ethnic Diversity Deflates Market Bubbles

But it's not in the rainbow and sing-along way you'd hope for. We just don't trust outsiders' judgments.

Online Brain Exercises Are Probably Useless

Even under the guidance of a specialist trainer, computer-based brain exercises have only modest benefits, a new analysis shows.

The Big One

One company, Comcast, will control up to 40 percent of Internet service coverage in the U.S., and 19 of the top 20 cable markets, if a proposed merger with Time Warner Cable is approved by regulators. November/December 2014

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