Contemporary Theorists for Medical Sociology: 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Contemporary Theorists for Medical Sociology

1st Edition

Edited by Graham Scambler


206 pages

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Contemporary Theorists for Medical Sociology explores the work of key social theorists and the application of their ideas to issues around health and illness.

Encouraging students and researchers to use mainstream sociological thought to inform and deepen their knowledge and understanding of the many arenas of health and healthcare, this text discusses and critically reviews the work of several influential contemporary thinkers, including – Foucault, Bauman, Habermas, Luhmann, Bourdieu, Merleau-Ponty, Wallerstein, Archer, Deleuze, Guattari, and Castells.

Each chapter includes a critical introduction to the central theses of a major social theorist, ways in which their ideas might inform medical sociology and some worked examples of how their ideas can be applied. Containing contributions from established scholars, rising stars and innovative practitioners, this book is a valuable read for those studying and researching the sociology of health and illness.


‘A well-crafted account of the work of several contemporary theorists in sociology in relation to their relevance for medical sociology. It has the potential to be highly influential in stimulating new insights and uses of the work of theorists sometimes overlooked in medical sociology’ – William C. Cockerham, Distinguished Professor of Sociology, University of Alabama at Birmingham, USA

Table of Contents

Introduction Theory, Theorists And The Sociology Of Health / Graham Scambler Chapter 1. Foucault, Health And Healthcare / Alan Petersen Chapter 2. Consuming Bodies: Zygmunt Bauman On The Difference Between Fitness And Health / Paul Higgs Chapter 3. Jurgen Habermas: Politics And Morality In Health And Medicine / Gemma Edwards Chapter 4. Luhmann’s Social Systems Theory, Health And Illness / Barry Gibson And Olga Boiko Chapter 5. Bourdieu And The Impact Of Health And Illness In The Lifeworld / Sasha Scambler Chapter 6. Merleau-Ponty, Medicine And The Body / Nick Crossley Chapter 7. World System Theory And The Epidemiological Transition / Martin Hyde And Anthony Rosie Chapter 8. Archer, Morphogenesis And The Role Of Agency In The Sociology Of Health Inequalities / Graham Scambler Chapter 9. Deleuze And Guattari / Nick Fox Chapter 10. Health And Medicine In The Information Age: Castells, Informational Capitalism And The Network Society / Simon Williams

About the Editor

Graham Scambler is Professor of Medical Sociology at University College London, UK.

About the Series

Critical Studies in Health and Society

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
MEDICAL / Health Care Delivery
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Sociology / General
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Disease & Health Issues