This popular book draws on a rich array of ethnographic cases from around the world to demonstrate the complexities of ideas and practices that surround the health of the human body, and how health is impacted by the beliefs and practices of the community. In addition to comprehensive updating and revision throughout the text, this second edition contains expanded materials on the epidemiology of malaria and tuberculosis and further reflections on both doctor-patient communication in contemporary settings and issues on the role of ritual in healing processes. Also, discussions of ethnopsychiatry and "alternative" medicine are expanded. Throughout history and throughout the world today, problems of health, sickness, and medical treatment have been intimately interwoven with social, cultural, and political life generally. Medical anthropology deals with these problems, recognizing the deep connections between cultural patterns, historical change, and life processes. Case studies in this book are drawn from around the world, including: Australia and the Pacific, China, India, Israel, Japan, Korea, Mexico, and the Americas generally. The authors make particular use of materials from their research in Papua New Guinea. This book is intended as a textbook usable for both anthropology courses and courses for medical students. The topics covered include a survey of earlier works in medical anthropology, regimens of bodily treatment, sex and reproduction, medical pluralism, doctor-patient communication, epidemiology, ethnopsychiatry illness and the emotions, and how new diseases have altered the ways in which individuals see themselves and how "traditional" practices alter to accommodate newdiseases.
Prof. Andrew Strathern, along with his wife, Dr. Pamela J. Stewart, is in the Department of Anthropology, University of Pittsburgh. Together they are the editors of the Ritual Studies Monograph Series and the Medical Anthropology Series for Carolina Academic Press.