Veterinary knowledge grappling with the industrialization of livestock farming. Rise and fall of a preventive veterinary medicine in the 1970’s France
Fortané, Nicolas (2018), Veterinary knowledge grappling with the industrialization of livestock farming. Rise and fall of a preventive veterinary medicine in the 1970’s France, Animal History Group 2nd Summer Conference, 2018-06, Londres, United Kingdom
TypeCommunication / Conférence
Conference titleAnimal History Group 2nd Summer Conference
Conference countryUnited Kingdom
MetadataShow full item record
Institut de Recherche Interdisciplinaire en Sciences Sociales [IRISSO]
Abstract (EN)In the 1970s, a form of preventive veterinary medicine called "ecopathology" emerged in France. Depending on local contexts and on the social trajectories of its entrepreneurs, several versions, some of them contradictory, of this preventive approach to animal diseases have been developed. In central and eastern France, where small cattle farms still dominate and social movements defending an alternative agricultural production model are taking root, ecopathologists are promoting an associative veterinary medicine, which is conceived as an opposition to the dominant model of veterinary medicine as an independent profession. In the west, where pig farming is in the process of intensification, ecopathology becomes a knowledge in adequacy with the industrialization of agriculture. This presentation intends to discuss this second story.The Porcine Pathology Station is created in 1975 with the objective of providing support to the pig industry which is facing an increase of new diseases outbreaks, inconnection with the transformation of farming conditions. Ecopathologists developstatistical techniques that promote a collective, non-curative approach to animalhealth, which are the first steps towards the epidemiology of animal diseases. This knowledge will eventually fail to constitute an original form of veterinary medicine, butit will be taken up by professional and economic agricultural organizations, and will contribute to a transformation of the human-animal relationship in industrial livestock farming where the herd, rather than the individual animal, becomes the referent by which health issues are thought. This work is based on the study of the scientific productions and expert reports of the ecopathologists of Ploufragan, as well as on twelve interviews.
Subjects / Keywordspreventive veterinary medicine
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