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Volume 73, issue 4
Geogr. Helv., 73, 321-333, 2018
https://doi.org/10.5194/gh-73-321-2018
© Author(s) 2018. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

Special issue: Theorien der Praxis in der Geographie

Geogr. Helv., 73, 321-333, 2018
https://doi.org/10.5194/gh-73-321-2018
© Author(s) 2018. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

Standard article 14 Nov 2018

Standard article | 14 Nov 2018

Intensive Geographien – die Versorgung von extremen Frühgeburten in Deutschland aus praxistheoretischer Perspektive

Matthias Lahr-Kurten Matthias Lahr-Kurten
  • independent researcher

Abstract. In Germany each year, more than 65000 children are born prematurely as ‚preterm infants‘ (or ‚preemies‘). Some 4500 of these are born extremely premature. Despite being sites of enormous human suffering und huge financial costs, the places of treatment of these babies are almost non-existent in societal discourse. Therefore, the aim of this article is to understand this place, the so-called ‚NICUs‘ – Neonatal Intensive Care Units, places that seem isolated from the rest of society, but are tightly connected to it.

In order to reach this aim, a ‚dense description‘ of a single NICU in Germany will be given, based on a stay of 5 months by the author. The underlying perspective of that dense description is the practice theoretical approach of social philosopher Theodore Schatzki.

The description of the NICU shows that corporeality, materiality, and not least emotionality are important aspects of social phenomena. As will be seen, the underlying practice theory is a relational ontology that resists the urge to draw on micro-macro-dichotomies to understand these phenomena.

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In Germany each year, thousands of children are born extremely prematurely. Despite being sites of enormous human suffering und huge financial costs, the places of treatment of these babies are almost non-existent in societal discourse. In order to understand these places which seem isolated from the rest of society, but are tightly connected to it, a ,dense description‘ of a single ,NICU‘ will be given – based on a stay by the author, drawing on the practice theoretical approach of Schatzki.
In Germany each year, thousands of children are born extremely prematurely. Despite being sites...
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