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How do we understand health in relation to society? What role does culture play in shaping our experiences of, and orientation to, health and illness? How do we understand medicine and medical treatment within a sociological framework?

James Y. Nazroo

A consideration of what is meant by the term ‘ethnicity’, and the more contentious term ‘race’, is, of course, central to any discussion of ethnic inequalities in health. There is a wide sociological literature on ethnicity and ‘race’, which can be broadly defined as concerned with understanding how ethnic and racial groups become social realities, the relationships between them, and the causes and extent of social inequalities between them. Within this work there is agreement that the concept of ‘race’, reflecting genetically distinct groupings, does not have scientific validity - that people cannot be divided into races ...

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