5th Edition

Culture, Health and Illness, Fifth edition

By Cecil G. Helman, Cecil Helman Copyright 2007

    Culture, Health and Illness is the leading international textbook on the role of cultural and social factors in health, illness, and medical care. Since first published in 1984, it has been used in over 40 countries within universities, medical schools and nursing colleges. This new edition meets the ever-growing need for a clear starting point in understanding the clinical significance of cultural and social factors. The book addresses the complex interactions between health, illness and culture by setting out anthropological theory in a highly readable, jargon-free style and integrating this with the practice of health care using real-life examples and case histories.

    Fully revised throughout, the fifth edition has expanded its coverage of topics that are challenging both the patient and the carer's understanding of health and illness: poverty and inequality of healthcare, genetics, biotechnology, the internet and health, chronic diseases, drug-resistant infections, changes in nutrition and body image, medical care of migrants, medical technology, global pandemics such as AIDS and malaria, drug and alcohol dependence, and patients' 'languages of distress', a complex topic central to the doctor-patient relationship.

    In today's world of increasing cultural, religious and ethnic diversity of populations, Culture, Health and Illness is essential reading for students of medicine, nursing, psychiatry, public health, health education, international health and medical anthropology, across the globe.

    Preface to the 5th Edition
    1. Introduction: the scope of medical anthropology
    2. The body: cultural definitions of anatomy and physiology
    3. Diet and Nutrition
    4. Caring and curing: the sectors of health care
    5. Doctor-patient interactions
    6. Gender and reproduction
    7. Pain and culture
    8. Culture and pharmacology: drugs, alcohol and tobacco
    9. Ritual and the management of misfortune
    10. Cross-cultural psychiatry
    11. Cultural aspects of stress and suffering
    12. Migration, globalization and health
    13. Telemedicine and the Internet
    14. New bodies, new selves: genetics and biotechnology
    15. Cultural factors in epidemiology
    16. The AIDS pandemic
    17. Tropical diseases: malaria and leprosy
    18. Medical anthropology and global health
    19. New research methods in medical anthropology
    Appendix: Journals and websites
    Author index
    Subject index


    Cecil G Helman, Professor of Medical Anthropology, Brunel University; Senior Lecturer, Dept of Primary Care and Population Sciences, UCL, London, UK

    Praise for earlier edition: 'When with humility we are ready to use this excellent book, we will better apply our science toward improving the quality of life throughout the globe'

    Journal of the American Medical Association

    Praise for earlier edition: 'This book can be thoroughly recommended for its fresh perspective on medical transactions'

    The Lancet

    Praise for earlier edition: 'It is clearly written and structured, a valuable source for current references, and easily accessible to the interested general reader or student of the field'

    Social Sciences in Health