Culture, Bodies and the Sociology of Health  book cover
1st Edition

Culture, Bodies and the Sociology of Health

ISBN 9781138382862
Published June 7, 2019 by Routledge
186 Pages

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Book Description

Culture, Bodies and the Sociology of Health explores the boundaries between bodies and society with special reference to uncovering the cultural components of health and the ways in which bodies are categorized according to a form of culturally embedded 'health orthodoxy'. Illustrating the importance of contextualizing the body as a cultural entity, this book demonstrates that the spaces and boundaries between healthy bodies are becoming more diverse than ever before. The volumes international team of scholars engage with a range of issues surrounding the cultural construction of the body as a site of health and illness. As such, it will be of interest not only to sociologists, especially sociologists of health, but also to scholars of media and communication studies as well as cultural theorists.

Table of Contents

Contents: Introduction: re-shaping bodies in the sociology of health, Elizabeth Ettorre. Part I Bodies and Technoscience: Transplantation, organ donation and (in)human experience: re-writing boundaries through embodied perspectives on kidney failure, Ciara Kierans; Normalized elites: rethinking doping as abnormal practice, April D. Henning; Embodying a healthy running body in a British non-elite road running community, Carol Sutton. Part II Bodies and Representations: The visible body: health representations in a consumer society, Rui Machado Gomes; The internet and medicalization: reshaping the global body and illness, Peter Conrad and Ashley Rondini; The ageing body: from bio-medical fatalism to understanding gender and biographical sensitivity, Jason L. Powell. Part III Abject Bodies: 'Where the excess grows': demarcating 'normal' and 'pathologically' obese bodies, Shirlene Badger; Bodies, drugs and reproductive regimes, Elizabeth Ettorre; Index.

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Elizabeth Ettorre is Professor of Sociology at the University of Liverpool, UK


'Ettore’s valuable collection re-vitalizes the sociology of health and illness by amalgamating theories of the body with theories of cultural representation, morality, and ethics. By locating particular body concerns in cultural definitions and technological representations of the normal and the abject, and the bio-medical politics that impose those definitions, the contributors build a sophisticated analysis of current structures of bio-power.' Judith Lorber, Graduate Center and Brooklyn College, City University of New York, USA ’Culture, bodies and the sociology of health is an innovative collection of articles that extends research on the body in the sociology of health in interesting ways. Reflecting the breadth of work being done in this area, contributors to the volume have diverse disciplinary backgrounds including sociology, anthropology, gerontology and social policy. A wide range of substantive areas are touched upon including transplantation, sport, aging, reproduction and obesity. There is also a nice mix of work by prominent and emergent scholars in the field.... This book is an interesting and stimulating read. The collection of papers that has been assembled provides an engaging review of how bodies are managed, surveyed and consumed throughout a range of age groups (childhood to elderly), as well as an attention to unique bodies such as those of the elite athlete, the pregnant woman and the obese individual. Exploring the boundaries between bodies and society, this book illustrates the importance of situating the body culturally.... The eclectic range of the contributions is the strength this anthology. Ettorre's edited volume extends research on bodies in the sociology of health in interesting and useful ways, making linkages with the subfields of technology and media studies.’ Health Sociology Review