Intimate Empire: Bodily contacts in an imperial zone

Anderson, Warwick. 2006. Colonial Pathologies: American Tropical Medicine, Race, and Hygiene in the Philippines. Durham, London: Duke University Press. 355 pages. ISBN o 8223 3843 2

Warwick Anderson’s fascinating new book is the outcome of meticulous research into the relationship between colonisation and medical practices in America‘ s administration of the Philippines, 1898 - 1930s. The author argues that as Americans sought to maintain their own corporal and psychic health during this imperial encounter, colonial medicine gradually came to represent Filipinos as a ‘contaminated’ race , and so attempted to ‘civilise’ and ‘reform’ them through a focus on personal hygiene and social conduct. This is a history, therefore, of the development of ‘biomedical citizenship (p 3).

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