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The Cultural Context of Health, Illness, and Medicine [Paperback]

Elisa J. Sobo , Martha Oehmke Loustaunau

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Book Description

Aug. 3 2010 0313377855 978-0313377853 2

Notable anthropologist George Foster defined the first edition as "a very readable introductory text dealing with the sociocultural aspects of health," adding: "[T]he authors do a commendable job… . I have profited from reading The Cultural Context of Health, Illness, and Medicine". With engaging examples, minimal jargon, and updated scholarship, the second edition of The Cultural Context of Health, Illness, and Medicine offers a comprehensive guide to the practice of culturally sensitive health care. Readers will see America's biomedically dominated health care system in a new light as the book reveals the changes wrought by increasing cultural diversity, technological innovation, and developments in care delivery.

Written by a sociologist and an anthropologist with direct, hands-on experience in the health services, the volume tracks culture's influence on and relationship to health, illness, and health-care delivery via an examination of social structure, medical systems, and the need for—and challenges to—culturally sensitive care. Cultural differences are situated against social-class differences and related health inequities, as well as different needs and challenges throughout the life course. In prescribing caring that is more holistic, culturally sensitive, and cost-effective, the work promotes awareness of pressing issues for health care professionals—and the people they serve.


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Product Description

Review

• Describes the special approaches anthropologists and sociologists take to health, clearly and concisely illustrating the main concepts used in the two fields

• Clearly demonstrates the influence of culture on caring and curing

• Takes social structure into account, countermanding the myth that all problems are cultural

• Calls for and describes a more flexible system of health care expressed in holistic ways, explaining how such approaches can meet modern medical needs



• More than 30 percent new material updates the 1997 edition, reflecting new scholarship and addressing emerging needs

• Multiple real-life examples and case studies illustrate and explain concepts

• Discussion questions follow each chapter and an appendix with project suggestions is provided

• A bibliography offers suggestions for further reading

Review

"Sobo and Loustaunau have done a splendid job in providing a concise, engaging, informative, and very readable introduction to the fields of medical anthropology and medical sociology. A successful synthesis of socio-behavioral science, health services, and public health knowledge which advances the field and should help to improve the quality of care and health outcomes experienced by our increasingly diverse population. This is a valuable text that I greatly enjoyed and highly recommend for use in undergraduate courses; medical, nursing, and public health schools; and other health professions training programs that are interested in transformative education that makes a difference."

(

Robert C. Like, MD, MS, Department of Family Medicine and Community Health, UMDNJ-Robert Wood Johnson Medical School

)

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