Mammography Wars: Analyzing Attention in Cultural and Medical Disputes (Critical Issues in Health and Medicine)
Mammography is a routine health screening performed forty million times each year in the United States, yet it remains one of the most deeply contested topics in medicine, with national health care organizations supporting conflicting guidelines. In Mammography Wars, sociologist Asia Friedman examines cultural and medical disagreements over mammography. At issue is whether to screen women under age fifty, which is rooted in deeper questions about early detection and the assumed linear and progressive development of breast cancer. Based on interviews with doctors and scientists, interviews with women ages 40 to 50, and newspaper coverage of mammography, Friedman uses the sociology of attention to map the cognitive structure of the “mammography wars,” offering insights into the entrenched nature of debates over mammography that often get missed when applying a medical lens. Friedman’s analysis also suggests the sociology of attention’s unique potential for analyzing cultural conflicts beyond mammography, and even beyond medicine.
Praise for Mammography Wars: Analyzing Attention in Cultural and Medical Disputes (Critical Issues in Health and Medicine)
“Friedman is a thorough researcher with a clear, engaging style. Her focus on patterns of attention as the organizing analytical framework is fresh and unusual: a fascinating read.”
— Kelly Joyce
“Mammography Wars is an insightful intervention into deeply entrenched conflict surrounding mammography screening standards in the United States. Friedman deftly blends together empirical analysis of the narratives driving disagreements among professionals and patients alike with a clear and accessible take on the power of the sociology of attention, breaking through seemingly intractable ideological battles to resolve conflict.”
— Piper Sledge