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Suparna Choudhury, PhD

Suparna Choudhury is an Assistant Professor at the Division of Social & Transcultural Psychiatry, McGill University and an Investigator at the Lady Davis Institute for Medical Research. She did her doctoral research in cognitive neuroscience at University College London, postdoctoral research in transcultural psychiatry at McGill and most recently directed an interdisciplinary research program on critical neuroscience and the developing brain at the Max Planck Institute for History of Science in Berlin. Her current work investigates the production and dissemination of biomedical knowledge – in particular cognitive neuroscience – that shapes the ways in which researchers, clinicians, patients and laypeople understand themselves, their mental health and their illness experiences. Dr Choudhury’s research focuses primarily on the cases of the adolescent brain, cultural neuroscience and personalized genomic medicine. Her research investigates (i) How biological knowledge with significant social and clinical impact is produced. This line of research has focused mainly on the models, methodologies and disciplinary intersections in developmental cognitive neuroscience labs that work on the “teenage brain”. (ii) How this knowledge circulates and how it is it taken up, applied or resisted. This looks at how brain research informs mental health policy trans-nationally, how the language of genomics and neuroscience is interpreted by patient communities and lay users, and how these sciences shape everyday practices outside scientific research from education to meditation (iii) Social and political contexts of cognitive neuroscience, and interdisciplinary approaches to brain research through the framework of critical neuroscience.

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Selected Articles

Choudhury, S., & Gold, I. (2011). Mapping the field of cultural neuroscience. BioSocieties, in press

Ortega, F., & Choudhury, S. (2011). “Wired up differently”: Autism, adolescence and neurological identities, Subjectivity, in press.

Choudhury, S., Gold, I., & Kirmayer, L. (2010). From brain image to the Bush doctrine: Critical neuroscience and the political uses of neurotechnology. American Journal of Bioethics: Neuroscience, 1(2), 17-19.

Choudhury, S., & Kirmayer, L. (2010). Cultural neuroscience and psychopathology: Prospects for cultural psychiatry. Progress in Brain Research, 178, 263-83.

Choudhury, S. (2009). Culturing the adolescent brain: What can neuroscience learn from anthropology? Social Cognitive Affective Neuroscience, 5(2-3), 159-167.

Choudhury, S., Nagel, S. K., & Slaby, J. (2009). Critical neuroscience: Linking neuroscience and society through critical practice. BioSocieties, 4(1), 61-77.

Choudhury, S., & Slaby, J. (April, 2009). Critical Neuroscience: Challenging reductionism in social neuroscience and psychiatry: A report. Anthropology News


Selected Books and Book Chapters

Choudhury, S., & Slaby, J. (Eds.). (2011). Critical neuroscience: A handbook of the social and cultural contexts of neuroscience. Wiley: Blackwell.

Ebensperger, L. Choudhury, S., & Slaby, J. (2011). Designing the lifeworld: Selfhood as an architectural project. In D. Hauptmann, & W. Neidich (Eds.), Cognitive Architecture. From bio-politics to noo-politics. Rotterdam: 010 Publishers.

Slaby, J., & Haueis, P., & Choudhury, S. (2011). Neuroscience as applied hermeneutics: Towards a critical neuroscience of political theory. In F. Vandervalk (Ed.), Neuroscience & Political Theory. UK: Routledge.

Choudhury, S., Charman, T., & Blakemore, S. J. (2009). Mentalizing and development during adolescence. In M. De Haan, & M. R. Gunnar (Eds.), Handbook of developmental social neuroscience (pp. 159-174). Guilford, UK: The Guilford Press.

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