Introducing Medical Anthropology: A Discipline in Action

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Rowman Altamira, Nov 4, 2011 - Social Science - 290 pages
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This revised textbook provides students with a first exposure to the growing field of medical anthropology. The narrative is guided by unifying themes. First, medical anthropology is actively engaged in helping to address pressing health problems around the globe through research, intervention, and policy-related initiatives. Second, illness and disease cannot be fully understood or effectively addressed by treating them solely as biological in nature; rather, health problems involve complex biosocial processes and resolving them requires attention to range of factors including systems of belief, structures of social relationship, and environmental conditions. Third, through an examination of health inequalities on the one hand and environmental degradation and environment-related illness on the other, the book underlines the need for going beyond cultural or even ecological models of health toward a comprehensive medical anthropology. The authors show that a medical anthropology that integrates biological, cultural, and social factors to truly understand the origin of ill health will contribute to more effective and equitable health care systems.
 

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Contents

Chapter 01 Introduction to Medical Anthropology
1
Chapter 02 What Medical Anthropologists Do
43
Chapter 03 Understanding Health Illness and Disease
77
Chapter 04 Ethnomedicine
117
Chapter 05 Medical Pluralism in the Contemporary World
143
Chapter 06 Health Disparity Health Inequality
175
Chapter 07 Health and the Environment
207
Glossary
241
References
249
Source Material for Students
283
Index
287
About the Authors
293
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About the author (2011)

Merrill Singer is a professor of anthropology and senior research scientist at the Center for Health, Intervention and Prevention at the University of Connecticut. He is the author, co-author, or editor of 24 books, including Killer Commodities: Public Health and the Corporate Production of Harm and The War Machine and Global Health.

Hans Baer is a senior lecturer in the School of Social and Political Sciences and the Centre of Health and Society at the University of Melbourne, Australia. His books include Toward an Integrative Medicine and Medical Anthropology and the World System.

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