Todd Meyers (TM): The first topic I want to discuss is influences and interlocutors. I’m curious about your beginnings and the directions your work has taken over the past decades.

Nikolas Rose (NR): I guess it’s best to talk about this biographically. I went up to university in the 1960s to read biology at Sussex University. I worked in the department of John Maynard Smith, a rather famous geneticist, mainly on fruit flies, on Drosophila — this was his model animal. Of course, the mid-1960s were a period of considerable social and political ferment. I became convinced that Drosophila genetics did not really hold the key to understanding the things that were happening around me. I moved first of all to animal behavior and then to human behavior — I ended up with qualifications in biology and psychology. When I left university, I trained as a teacher, and I...

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