Wrong Body Parts / Sinus Fiction / Possibility Studies

This week’s Feedback column (that I write) in New Scientist magazine has three segments. Here are bits of each of them:

  • Wrong, wrong, wrong — The Journal of Patient Safety has a new report called “Insurance claims for wrong-side, wrong-organ, wrong-procedure, or wrong-person surgical errors: A retrospective study for 10 years“. Something is a little off even with that title….
  • Sinus fiction — Sinus problems afflict many people, yet sinuses receive not nearly as much literary or scientific acclaim as hearts, brains, lungs, hands, feet, genitals and other body regions. Their uncelebrity perhaps affects how much acclaim and research funding is applied to sinuses and sinus issues. Fiction books explicitly about sinus problems are rare. The most clearly labelled book of this kind is a 59-pager called Sinus by Naema Gabriel, published in 2013. … 
  • Possibility studies — In the premier issue of the new scholarly journal Possibility Studies & Society, the managing editor, Vlad P. Glăveanu, gives what he says is “a manifesto” about what is possible in the journal. He manifestoises about the “shift of focus from being to becoming, from what is to what could be”. The work is a jargon-filled festival, brimming with the locus of possibility, the relational space of action, new affordances, sociogenetically long histories, radical open-endedness, the imperativeness of an ethics of possibility, and other alphabetical phrases….