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Epidemiology and Culture : Cambridge Studies in Medical Anthropology - James A. Trostle

Epidemiology and Culture

Cambridge Studies in Medical Anthropology


Published: 29th October 2008
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This book shows how practitioners in the emerging field of 'cultural epidemiology' describe human health, communicate with diverse audiences, and intervene to improve health and prevent disease. It uses textual and statistical portraits of disease to describe past and present collaborations between anthropology and epidemiology. Interpreting epidemiology as a cultural practice helps to reveal the ways in which measurement, causal thinking, and intervention design are all influenced by belief, habit, and theories of power. By unpacking many common disease risks and epidemiologic categories, this book reveals unexamined assumptions and shows how sociocultural context influences measurement of disease. Examples include studies of epilepsy, cholera, mortality on the Titanic, breastfeeding, and adolescent smoking. The book describes methods as varied as observing individuals, measuring social networks, and compiling data from death certificates. It argues that effective public health interventions must work more often and better at the level of entire communities.

'The strength of this book lies in its broad scope that covers history, methods, case studies, and current issues. Each chapter has a further reading list and importantly, Trostle provides comprehensive references which include some of the most seminal research studies in the fields of social medicine, social epidemioloy, and medical anthropology ... Trostle's book is the first that I am aware of that provides such a broad and accessible review of the history and current state of the field of culture/medical anthropology.' Medicine, Health Care and Philosophy

The origins of an integrated approach in anthropology and epidemiology
Disease patterns and assumptions: unpacking variables
Cultural issues in measurement and bias
Anthropological contributions to the study of cholera
Anthropological and epidemiological collaboration to help communities become healthier
Perceiving and representing risk
Table of Contents provided by Publisher. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780521790505
ISBN-10: 0521790506
Series: Cambridge Studies in Medical Anthropology
Audience: Professional
Format: Hardcover
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 232
Published: 29th October 2008
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 22.9 x 15.2  x 1.8
Weight (kg): 0.51