Michelle Murphy

Professor, Department of History and Women and Gender Studies Institute
Affiliated Faculty, CSUS


Wilson Hall, New College, Room 2039, 40 Willcocks Street




Bucket samplers, office cubicles, errant molecules, manual suction abortion kits, protocols, drosophila in bottles, vibrio cholerae, GDP,  girls as human capital, queer fish, sick buildings, anticipation, atmospheric pollution, chemical infrastructures...

These are some of the technologies and phenomena I grapple with as a historian of the recent past and feminist technoscience studies scholar.  My work focuses on environmental politics, labor, biopolitics, sexed and raced life, calculation, economic practices, reproduction, and technology  with a focus on the US through feminist transnational, postcolonial, political economic, and queer approaches.

I am a Professor in the History Department and Women and Gender Studies Institute at the University of Toronto, with graduate appointments in Science and Technology Studies at York University and the Institute for the History and Philosophy of Science and Technology at U of T.  I have a PhD in the History of Science from Harvard University (1998), and a Bachelors degree in Biology and History and Philosophy of Science and Technology from the University of Toronto (1992).

I am the director of Technoscience Research Unit, housed in WGSI, and am a co-organizer of the Toronto Technoscience Salon.

Research interests

The history of techno science
Sex, gender, race
Environmental politics and capitalism in the United States, through transnational and postcolonial theoretical perspectives


Ph. D Harvard University (1998)

B.A. University of Toronto (1992)

awards and distinctions

Jackman Humanities Research Fellow, 2009-2010
Ludwik Fleck Prize, Society for Social Studies of Science, 2008
Michelle Clayman Gender Research Institute Senior Research Fellowship, Stanford, 2007-2008
Distinguished Junior Scholar, Peter Wall Institute for Advanced Study, University of British Columbia, 1999
Graduate Society Fellowship, Harvard University, 1995
University of Californai, Berkeley, Exchange Scholar, Rhetoric Department, 1994
Bernice B. Cronkhite Fellowship, Harvard University, 1993-1994
Strominger Prize for the History of Medicine, Harvard University, 1992-1993
Professor D. O Robson Graduate Scholarship for History, University of Toronto, 1992-1993

Selected Publications

Seizing the Means of Reproduction: Entanglements of Feminism, Technoscience, and Health (Duke University Press, 2012)

Sick Building Syndrome and the Problem of Uncertainty: Environmental Politics, Technoscience, and Women Workers (Duke University Press, 2006).

“Economization of Life: Calculative Infrastructures of Population and Economy” in Peg Rawes, ed.Relational Ecologies: Subjectivity, Sex, Nature and Architecture (London: Routledge, June 2013):225-254.

“Distributed Reproduction, Chemical Violence, and Latency” The Scholar and Feminist Online 11.3 (October, 2013)

“Anticipation: Technoscience, Life, Affect, Temporality” Subjectivities 28.1 (2009): 246–265, joint author with Vincanne Adams and Adele Clarke.


Postcolonial Cyborgs for Planetary Futures
Gender and Environmental Injustice
Text, Theories, History
Time, Technoscience and Capitalism
Biopolitics and History


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