• Summary
  • Contents
  • Subject index

This is the first international and inter-disciplinary social science Handbook on health and medicine. Five years in the making, and building on the insights and advice of an international editorial board, the book brings together world-class figures to provide an indispensable, comprehensive resource book on social science, health and medicine. Pinpointing the focal issues of research and debate in one volume, the material is organized into three sections: social and cultural frameworks of analysis; the experience of health and illness; and health care systems and practices. Each section consists of specially commissioned chapters designed to examine the vital conceptual and methodological practice and policy issues.

Personal Experience of Illness
Personal experience of illness
Introduction

They need to understand that we don't live in a health clinic' These are the words of an Ethiopian-Israeli political activist, protesting his country's public health policy with respect to the prevention of HIV infection. In particular, he objected to the routinized (but unpublicized) destruction of blood donations made by Ethiopian immigrants, which he believed had stigmatized his community in a way that would have important social and health consequences (Seeman 1997). Indeed, the two can hardly be separated. As experience in the United States and elsewhere has shown, serious consequences can derive from depicting an ethnically defined segment of the population primarily as a vector of risk for infectious disease without an equal degree of concern for ...

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