Illness and Healing
Your upfront cost: $0
- 24 Jul 2023
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Our student advisors are here to guide you with:
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On successful completion of this unit, you will be able to:
- Demonstrate command of anthropological knowledge and theory as it relates to medical anthropology and the broader study of illness and healing practices in their social and cultural contexts.
- Identify the processes through which biology, culture, politics, and ecology interact to shape illness and health, health systems, and patterns.
- Research, analyse, and represent the illness experience of a person or community, emphasizing the integrative factors (culture, politics, social structure, etc.) influencing the condition.
- Identify and apply the theories and concepts of medical anthropology to critically evaluate one’s own culture and determinants of illness and health.
- Analyse how illness and health (and normality) are constructed within particular social, cultural, political, and environmental contexts.
- Analyse how inequality, social hierarchy, and structural violence generate unequal and often unique health determinants in the global and transnational context.
- A week-by-week guide to the topics you will explore in this subject will be provided in your study materials.
You should not enrol in this subject if you have successfully completed any of the following subject(s) because they are considered academically equivalent:
- MAQ-ANT202 (Not currently available)
- MAQ-ANTX202-Illness and Healing (No longer available)
You must have successfully completed the following subject(s) before starting this subject:one of
- MAQ-ANTX1006-Drugs Across Cultures (No longer available)
- MAQ-ANTX2051-Human Evolution and Diversity (No longer available)
NCCW (pre-2020 units): ANT202, ANTH202, ANTH274, ANTX202 NCCW (2020 and onwards): ANTH2002 Illness and Healing Pre-requisite: 40 cps at 1000 level or above
- Other requirements -
Students who have an Academic Standing of Suspension or Exclusion under Macquarie University's Academic Progression Policy are not permitted to enrol in OUA units offered by Macquarie University. Students with an Academic Standing of Suspension or Exclusion who have enrolled in units through OUA will be withdrawn.
This unit introduces a perspective on illness and healing that opens up when we give central importance to human experiences of what it is to be ill or to be healed. This means that we do not necessarily have to choose between biology and sociology, between individual and culture. These elements get integrated – and this insight comes through in the more holistic understandings of “alternative” therapies as well as in the accounts we have of healing traditions from around the world. But how and where does this integration occur? To answer this, we need to refer to experience, both individual and collective. The unit will give priority to richly experiential accounts made available in ethnographies, as well as in other kinds of writing such as literature and introduce a perspective called phenomenology. As we seek to understand the wide variety of ways in which different cultural histories have understood what it means to be ill or to be healed, we will necessarily go deeper into some of anthropology’s most fundamental challenge – it tells us that what it means to be ‘human’ is fundamentally a relationship to the world around us, and that world has been understood in very different ways across time and place.
- Essay (40%)
- Weekly online quizzes (20%)
- Tutoial Participation (15%)
- Mid session quiz (25%)
For textbook details check your university's handbook, website or learning management system (LMS).