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Taking rumours seriously: Why organ thieves matter to malaria control

Iskander, D; (2017) Taking rumours seriously: Why organ thieves matter to malaria control. Anthropology Today , 33 (4) pp. 9-12. 10.1111/1467-8322.12360. Green open access

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Abstract

This article documents what happened when a group of researchers tried to gain consent to carry out a survey for a malaria‐related research project in the Sabah region of Malaysia at the end of 2015. Within weeks, rumours had begun to spread on social media that the team were fake and using the guise of a research project to steal organs. The refusal to participate is often considered only relevant to researchers in so far as it has implications for the project itself. However, non‐participation in research is a valuable area of inquiry in its own right, precisely because of what it reveals about what lies beyond the research project. Rumours that contribute to non‐participation are indicative of the murky space of social relationships and connections that surround health. In fact, as is illustrated in this case study, rumours do not just reveal or represent this interconnected world, they also incite affect. It is within this space that bodies are put at risk of a number of health issues ranging from malaria to organ theft and it is thus here where researchers should focus more attention.

Type: Article
Title: Taking rumours seriously: Why organ thieves matter to malaria control
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1111/1467-8322.12360
Publisher version: https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/14...
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS > Dept of Anthropology
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10054374
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