Although health and illness have long been social and political concerns, recent times have witnessed an increasing preoccupation with monitoring and promoting physical and emotional well-being. For example, people are being increasingly subjected to the clinical gaze, that is, to unprecedented levels of medical scrutiny. Governments, health providers and charities continually exhort us to monitor and enhance our physical and emotional well-being, speci cally, among other injunctions: to take daily exercise; to limit alcohol intakes and consume more fruit and vegetables; to regulate body weights; and to take part in screenings for various diseases and conditions such as cancer, depression, diabetes and heart disease.