Interdisciplinary Perspectives on Health, Illness and Disease


The study of health care brings one into contact with many disciplines and perspectives, including those of the provider and the patient. There are also multiple academic lenses through which one can view health, illness and disease. This book brings together scholars from around the world who are interested in developing new conversations intended to situate health in broader social and cultural contexts. This book is the outcome of the second global conference on “Making Sense of: Health, Illness and Disease,” held at St Hilda's College, Oxford, in July 2003. The selected papers pursue a range of topics and incorporate perspectives from the humanities, social sciences and clinical sciences.
This volume will be of interest to researchers and health care practitioners who wish to gain insight into other ways of understanding health, illness and disease.


EUR €54.00USD $68.00

Biographical Note

Peter L. Twohig and Vera Kalizkus co-edited Making Sense of Health, Illness and Disease (Rodopi, 2004), a companion volume to this collection.
Dr Twohig is Canada Research Chair, Saint Mary’s University (Halifax, NS, Canada) where he specializes in studies of health and medicine. His research explores changing ideas of professional identity and clinical practice, focusing recently on the rise of evidence-based medicine. He has published two other books and his recent work has been published in Family Medicine, American Journal of Bioethics, British Medical Journal and the Canadian Medical Association Journal.
Dr Kalitzkus is a medical anthropologist. Her fields of interest are cultural conceptions of body and self; anthropology of death; biomedicine and doctor-patient-communication.She published a study on organtransplantation in Germany (“Leben durch den Tod. Die zwei Seiten der Organtransplantation in Deutschland. Eine medizinethnologische Studie. Frankfurt/New York: Campus).

Table of contents

Vera KALITZKUS and Peter L. TWOHIG: Introduction Part 1 Philosophical Approaches to Health, Illness and Disease Michael WEINGARTEN: The Sanctity of Life or the Sanctification of Life? A Critical Reassessment of Jewish Medical Ethics Richard A. INGRAM: Beyond the Body Beautiful: The Uses and Dangers of Nietzsche’s Rethinking of Health and Illness James A. MARCUM: Mechanized Bodies or Embodied Persons? Alternative Models of the Patient’s Body in Modern Medicine Part 2 Representations of Health, Illness, and Disease: Personal, Public and Institutional Perspectives Nicola GOC: Mothers and Madness: The Media Representation of Postpartum Psychosis Brett SMITH and Andrew C. SPARKES: Becoming Disabled through Sport: Narrative Types, Metaphors and the Reconstruction of Selves Bernie WARREN: Bring Me Sunshine: The Effects of Clown-Doctors on the Mood and Attitudes of Healthcare Staff Part 3 Reframing Clinical Encounters: Narrative, Literature and Video Jarmila MILDORF: Narrativising the Body: Fragmentation and Unification in Jed Mercurio’s Bodies Betty BEDNARSKI: The Possibilities of Story: Jacques Ferron’s “Little William” and the Teaching of Obstetrics Karen CHRISTOPHER and Gregory MAKOUL: Patient Narrative Videos: Learning from the Illness Experience Ottomar BAHRS, Susanne HEIM, Vera KALITZKUS, Peter F. MATTHIESSEN, Hermann MÜLLER: Salutogenesis in General Practice: How to use the Potential of Doctor-Patient Communication to Promote Health Part 4 Making Sense of the Art of Dying Jon E. CUTLER: Ars Moriendi: The Lost Art of Dying Harold SCHWEIZER: The Art of Dying: Hodler’s Cycle of Paintings of Valentine Godé-Darel