Sociology is a core topic for all trainee health professionals, but many struggle to get to grips with it and to see what sociology has to offer. Based on years of experience teaching sociology to health care students, Lani Russell has written a truly introductory text which explains the main sociological concepts without jargon or becoming too advanced. Using carefully chosen examples, she shows how health issues are influenced by social phenomena such as class, race or sexuality and the relevance this has for practitioners.



Key Issues

  • The work of health professionals reflects powerful groups and ideas in society
  • Medical communities are associated with changing ideas in society about the parameters of health
  • Changing conceptions of health are also maintained and developed in the thoughts, conversations and routines of lay people


In all our lives, there are people who have power over us. Some of these people are close to us, people we see regularly – our boss, landlord or parent, for example. Others, such as the Prime Minister or the Vice-Chancellor of our university, are more distant. What all of these people have in common is that they are in a position in relation to us which means that they may require us to behave in particular ways – and we ...

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