Understanding Political Ecologies of Risk in Puerto Rico
This introductory chapter formulates a theoretical understanding of risk, in order to illustrate the impact of the pharmaceutical industry on Puerto Rican society. Globalization has been shaping the lives of Puerto Ricans for more than 500 years, creating a society that has seen broad environmental changes, reducing old risks and creating new ones. As such, human bodies remain a key site of experience of pollution; and in this sense, bodies are at same time an individual body, a social body, and subject to a body politic. In the case of Nocoreños, Puerto Rico, both the bodies and the natural environment bear a substantial burden as a result of the pharmaceutical factories' activities. The pharmaceutical companies themselves play a multifaceted role as polluters, economic providers, and social actors—further complicating the relationship between both the state and the body.
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