41,029 research outputs found

    Consent and the Construction of the Volunteer: Institutional Settings of Experimental Research on Human Beings in Britain during the Cold War

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    This study challenges the primacy of consent in the history of human experimentation and argues that privileging the cultural frameworks adds nuance to our understanding of the construction of the volunteer in the period 1945 to 1970. Historians and bio-ethicists have argued that medical ethics codes have marked out the parameters of using people as subjects in medical scientific research and that the consent of the subjects was fundamental to their status as volunteers. However, the temporality of the creation of medical ethics codes means that they need to be understood within their historical context. That medical ethics codes arose from a specific historical context rather than a concerted and conscious determination to safeguard the well-being of subjects needs to be acknowledged. The British context of human experimentation is under-researched and there has been even less focus on the cultural frameworks within which experiments took place. This study demonstrates, through a close analysis of the Medical Research Council's Common Cold Research Unit (CCRU) and the government's military research facility, the Chemical Defence Experimental Establishment, Porton Down (Porton), that the `volunteer' in human experiments was a subjective entity whose identity was specific to the institution which recruited and made use of the subject. By examining representations of volunteers in the British press, the rhetoric of the government's collectivist agenda becomes evident and this fed into the institutional construction of the volunteer at the CCRU. In contrast, discussions between Porton scientists, staff members, and government officials demonstrate that the use of military personnel in secret chemical warfare experiments was far more complex. Conflicting interests of the military, the government and the scientific imperative affected how the military volunteer was perceived

    The temporality of rhetoric: the spatialization of time in modern criticism

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    Every conception of criticism conceals a notion of time which informs the manner in which the critic conceives of history, representation and criticism itself. This thesis reveals the philosophies of time inherent in certain key modern critical concepts: allegory, irony and the sublime. Each concept opens a breach in time, a disruption of chronology. In each case this gap or aporia is emphatically closed, elided or denied. Taking the philosophy of time elaborated by Giorgio Agamben as an introductory proposition, my argument turns in Chapter One to the allegorical temporality which Walter Benjamin sees as the time of photography. The second chapter examines the aesthetics of the sublime as melancholic or mournful untimeliness. In Chapter Three, Paul de Man's conception of irony provides an exemplary instance of the denial of this troubling temporal predicament. In opposition to the foreclosure of the disturbing temporalities of criticism, history and representation, the thesis proposes a fundamental rethinking of the philosophy of time as it relates to these categories of reflection. In a reading of an inaugural meditation on the nature of time, and in examining certain key contemporary philosophical and critical texts, I argue for a critical attendance to that which eludes those modes of thought that attempt to map time as a recognizable and essentially spatial field. The Confessions of Augustine provide, in the fourth chapter, a model for thinking through the problems set up earlier: Augustine affords us, precisely, a means of conceiving of the gap or the interim. In the final chapter, this concept is developed with reference to the criticism of Arnold and Eliot, the fiction of Virginia Woolf and the philosophy of cinema derived from Deleuze and Lyotard. In conclusion, the philosophical implications of the thesis are placed in relation to a conception of the untimeliness of death

    The company she keeps : The social and interpersonal construction of girls same sex friendships

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    This thesis begins a critical analysis of girls' 'private' interpersonal and social relations as they are enacted within two school settings. It is the study of these marginal subordinated worlds productivity of forms of femininity which provides the main narrative of this project. I seek to understand these processes of (best) friendship construction through a feminist multi-disciplinary frame, drawing upon cultural studies, psychoanalysis and accounts of gender politics. I argue that the investments girls bring to their homosocial alliances and boundary drawing narry a psychological compulsion which is complexly connected to their own experiences within the mother/daughter bond as well as reflecting positively an immense social debt to the permissions girls have to be nurturant and ; negatively their own reproduction of oppressive exclusionary practices. Best friendship in particular gives girls therefore, the experience of 'monogamy' continuous of maternal/daughter identification, reminiscent of their positioning inside monopolistic forms of heterosexuality. But these subcultures also represent a subversive discontinuity to the public dominance of boys/teachers/adults in schools and to the ideologies and practices of heterosociality and heterosexuality. By taking seriously their transmission of the values of friendship in their chosen form of notes and diaries for example, I was able to access the means whereby they were able to resist their surveillance and control by those in power over them. I conclude by arguing that it is through a recognition of the valency of these indivisiblly positive and negative aspects to girls cultures that Equal Opportunities practitioners must begin if they are serious about their ambitions. Methods have to be made which enable girls to transfer their 'private' solidarities into the 'public' realm, which unquestionably demands contesting with them the causes and consequences of their implication in the divisions which also contaminate their lives and weaken them

    Studies of strategic performance management for classical organizations theory & practice

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    Nowadays, the activities of "Performance Management" have spread very broadly in actually every part of business and management. There are numerous practitioners and researchers from very different disciplines, who are involved in exploring the different contents of performance management. In this thesis, some relevant historic developments in performance management are first reviewed. This includes various theories and frameworks of performance management. Then several management science techniques are developed for assessing performance management, including new methods in Data Envelopment Analysis (DEA) and Soft System Methodology (SSM). A theoretical framework for performance management and its practical procedures (five phases) are developed for "classic" organizations using soft system thinking, and the relationship with the existing theories are explored. Eventually these results are applied in three case studies to verify our theoretical development. One of the main contributions of this work is to point out, and to systematically explore the basic idea that the effective forms and structures of performance management for an organization are likely to depend greatly on the organizational configuration, in order to coordinate well with other management activities in the organization, which has seemingly been neglected in the existing literature of performance management research in the sense that there exists little known research that associated particular forms of performance management with the explicit assumptions of organizational configuration. By applying SSM, this thesis logically derives some main functional blocks of performance management in 'classic' organizations and clarifies the relationships between performance management and other management activities. Furthermore, it develops some new tools and procedures, which can hierarchically decompose organizational strategies and produce a practical model of specific implementation steps for "classic" organizations. Our approach integrates popular types of performance management models. Last but not least, this thesis presents findings from three major cases, which are quite different organizations in terms of management styles, ownership, and operating environment, to illustrate the fliexbility of the developed theoretical framework

    Ionic Liquids on Oxide Surfaces

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    Ionic liquids supported on oxide surfaces are being investigated for numerous applications including catalysis, batteries, capacitors, transistors, lubricants, solar cells, corrosion inhibitors, nanoparticle synthesis and biomedical applications. The study of ionic liquids with oxide surfaces presents challenges both experimentally and computationally. The interaction between ionic liquids and oxide surfaces can be rather complex, with defects in the oxide surface playing a key role in the adsorption behaviour and resulting electronic properties. The choice of the cation/anion pair is also important and can influence molecular ordering and electronic properties at the interface. These controllable interfacial behaviours make ionic liquid/oxide systems desirable for a number of different technological applications as well as being utilised for nanoparticle synthesis. This topical review aims to bring together recent experimental and theoretical work on the interaction of ionic liquids with oxide surfaces, including TiO2, ZnO, Al2O3, SnO2 and transition metal oxides. It focusses on the behaviour of ionic liquids at model single crystal surfaces, the interaction between ionic liquids and nanoparticulate oxides, and their performance in prototype devices

    Epistemologies of possibility: social movements, knowledge production and political transformation

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    Urgent global problems - whether military conflicts, economic insecurities, immigration controls or mass incarceration-not only call for new modes of political action but also demand new forms of knowledge. For if knowledge frameworks both shape the horizons of social intelligibility and chart t he realms of political possibility, then epistemological interventions constitute a crucial part of social change. Social movements play a key role in this work by engaging in dissident knowledge practices that open up space for political transformation. But what are the processes and conditions through which social movements generate new ways of knowing?'What is politically at stake in the various knowledge strategies that activists use to generate social change? Despite a growing literature on the role of epistemological dimensions of protest, social movement studies tend to neglect specific questions of epistemological change. Often treating knowledge as a resource or object rather than a power relation and a social practice, social movement scholars tend to focus on content rather than production, frames rather than practices, taxonomies rather than processes. Missing is a more dynamic account of the conditions, means and power relations through which transformative knowledge practices come to be constituted and deployed. Seeking to better understand processes of epistemological transformation, this thesis explores the relationship between social movements, knowledge production and political change. Starting from an assumption that knowledge not only represents the world, but also works to constitute it, this thesis examines the role of social movement knowledge practices in shaping the conditions of political possibility. Drawing from the context of grassroots queer, transgender and feminist organizing around issues of prisons and border controls in North America, the project explores how activists generate new forms of knowledge and forge new spaces of political possibility. Working through a series of concepts-transformation, resistance, experience, co-optation, solidarity and analogy - this thesis explores different ways of understanding processes of epistemological change with in social movement contexts. It considers processes that facilitate or enable epistemological change and those that limit or prohibit such change. Bringing together a range of theoretical perspectives, including feminist, queer, critical race and post-structuralist analyses, and drawing on interviews with grassroots activists, the thesis explores what is politically at stake in the different ways we conceptualise, imagine and engage in processes of epistemological change

    Applications and practical considerations of polarisation structuring by a Fresnel cone

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    The polarisation property of light has been known about for hundreds of years. Often its use in technology has been limited to uniform states, however, more recently light with structured polarisation has gained interest. This is largely prompted by availability of spatial light modulators for generation, and increased computation speed to model complex focal fields. My PhD research has extended upon work carried out during a master’s project where we investigated the use of a solid glass cone (so-called Fresnel cone) for generating vector vortex beams. The aim of this thesis is to report on the potential use of a Fresnel cone in microscopy and polarimetry applications, and practical implications discovered. Expanding on the previous work, enhanced fidelity polarisation states are measured and a newly developed Fresnel cone coupling technique is shown, allowing high-efficiency annular vector vortex beam generation. We demonstrate through simulations based on vector diffraction theory that azimuthally polarised light with OAM generated using a Fresnel cone can provide sub-diffraction limited focal spots, below those of more well-known radially polarised light. Practical implications were encountered, prompting investigation into the effects of phase aberrations on resulting focal spots, and experimental measurement of cone surface topology. We find the uniformity of the Fresnel cone shape and apex angle is crucial to the focussing properties. For polarimetry application, full details are provided for a single-shot full-Stokes polarimeter technique and proof-of-principle experiment, where broadband operation is demonstrated. I conclude by summarising the findings of my research and suggest potential future work in this area
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