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Unit information: Anthropology and Global Health in 2016/17

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Unit name Anthropology and Global Health
Unit code SSCM30003
Credit points 10
Level of study H/6
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 2 (weeks 13 - 24)
Unit director Professor. Lambert
Open unit status Not open




School/department Bristol Medical School
Faculty Faculty of Health Sciences

Description including Unit Aims

This unit aims to develop knowledge and understanding of the roles of culture, social structure and political economy in shaping global health problems and interventions by introducing students to anthropological approaches to global health and bioethics.

Intended Learning Outcomes

  • Appreciate the importance of taking local and organizational culture, social structure and social processes into account in the design and appraisal of health interventions and in the interpretation of evidence concerning their effectiveness
  • Understand the value of involving local communities to facilitate effective health-related behavioural and social change
  • Recognise the role of medical pluralism and non-biomedical practices in health care provision
  • Be aware of ethical considerations in undertaking clinical trials and other types of health research in resource-poor settings
  • To consider diverse perspectives when planning or delivering health interventions in a culturally sensitive manner

Teaching Information

This unit will be taught in the form of workshops using a variety of teaching methods including lectures, presentations, journal clubs, debates and seminars.

Assessment Information

Formative assessment: Group presentations in week 5 based on allotted readings

Summative assessment: 3000 word individual essay

Reading and References

General background/preparatory reading

Biehl J, Petryna A. (2013). When people come first: Critical studies in global health. Princeton University Press. [Electronic and hard copies in UoB library]

Farmer P, Kim JY, Kleinman A, Basilico M. (2013). Reimagining global health: An introduction. Berkeley etc: University of California Press. [in UoB library]

Good, B et al (eds.). (2010). A reader in medical anthropology: Theoretical trajectories, emergent realities. Malden etc.: Wiley-Blackwell.

Hahn R, Inhorn M (eds.). (2009). Anthropology in public health: Bridging differences in culture and society [2nd ed.] New York & Oxford: Oxford University Press. [in UoB library]

Inhorn M, Brown, P. (1997). The anthropology of infectious disease: International health perspectives. Amsterdam: Gordon & Breach. [in UoB library]

Lambert H. (2012). ‘New medical anthropology’, in The Sage handbook of social anthropology [Vol 2]. Fardon R. et al (eds), pp.352-364. Los Angeles etc: Sage. [e-version in UoB library]

Nichter M. (2008). Global Health: why cultural perceptions, social representations and biopolitics matter. Tucson: University of Arizona Press.

Pool R, Geissler W. (2005). Medical anthropology. Open University Press [Understanding Public Health series] [copy available in UoB library]