Gender, Health and Healing: The Public/Private Divide, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Gender, Health and Healing

The Public/Private Divide, 1st Edition

Edited by Gill Bendelow, Mick Carpenter, Caroline Vautier, Simon Williams


304 pages

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pub: 2001-11-08
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What do we mean by 'gender' and how does this relate to health?

How is 'biology' best understood?

What does a focus on the division of labour bring to our understanding of health work?

Is (gender) 'equity' in health possible?

How have developments such as the resurgence of emotions and the new genetics affected these and other social relations at the turn of the century?

These are just some of the questions addressed in Gender, Health and Healing in which a whole range of issues are brought together and connected to emerging concerns in contemporary life such as the new genetics and transformations in biomedical knowledge and practices. It offers a challenging assessment of gender relations and embodied practices across the public/private divide, using health and healing as paradigmatic examples.

This thought-provoking volume lies at the intersection of gender studies, the sociology of health and healing, health policy, the critical analysis of scientific knowledge and the current debates around the body, health and emotions. Bringing together new and leading scholars in the field, it provides a unique critical overview of contemporary debates in health care for an interdisciplinary readership.


'Of enormous importance and utility … offers a chronicle of the past and signals pathways for the future.' - Charlie Reilly, Inter-American Foundation

'This reviewer is clearly impressed with the quality of the ODI family of books: they get high marks for originality, scholarship and social utility - a rare combination in the development literature … The bottom line: we have here important, attractive books with timely issues, rich documentation, realistic, practical advice. All in all, highly recommended.' - Thomas F. Carroll, Development Policy Review

Anyone who worries that academic reflection on health and illness is detached from the messiness of experience, or removed from political and moral purpose, can take heart from this volume. Leaving aside the pleasures of fiction and poetry, it is the most enjoyable read I have had in recent months. And if you think I should get out more, get hold of a copy and see for yourself. Laura Potts Healthcare

Table of Contents

Introduction One: Biology 'Revisited' 1. New Genetics and New Eugenics: the Rise and Rise of Consumer Eugenics 2. Body Machines: Feminist Readings of the Biological Body 3. Rethinking the Biological: Reductionism, Constructionism and Beyond Two: Gender (in)Equality 4. Conceptualizing Gender and Health 5. Men Behaving Badly? The Theory and Practice of Gendered Approaches to Men's Health and Illness 6. Gender Equity in Health: A Challenge for the next Millennium Three: Human Reproduction 7. Alien Bodies and Genetic Technologies: Unintended Consequences and Responsible Ethics 8. Assessing the Infertile: Health Professionals' perceptions of the Suitability of Patients for Parenthood 9. Protection, Control or Interference: Lay and Professional views on the desirability and 'risks' of prenatal screening tests among Palestinian Women Four: Gender, 'Work' and the (Emotional) Division of Labour 10. Gender and the Politics of Professional Self-Regulation 11. The Gendering of Psychiatry 12. Emotions Across the Public / Private Divide 13. The Mediators: Mothers of Disabled Children and the Social Order Five: Ferment and Change 14. Health, Illness and the Troubled Issue of Informed Consent 15. Medical Uncertainty and the (Bio)Ethics Debate 16. Integrated Medicine 17. Health Medicine and Society at and into the Millennium Afterword Conclusions

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Sociology / General
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Gender Studies
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Disease & Health Issues