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Routledge Studies in Health in Africa


About the Series

Health is supremely political. It mirrors a society’s most rudimentary status, answering questions such as ‘Who dies?’, ‘Who lives?’, ‘Who suffers?’, ‘Who thrives?’, ‘Who pays?’, and ‘Who cares?’ Global health adds to this complexity by elevating the level of analysis to the transnational and the multilateral. It is no surprise that the cognate and interdisciplinary fields of study of Global Health Governance and the Global Health Humanities have gained such traction over the past decade or so. Since the turn of the millennium global spending on global health has exploded, and the (re-)emergence of horrors such as Ebola, Zika, AIDS, and antibiotic resistance have brought home to governments and citizens alike the immediacy and primacy of health challenges.

Health in Africa – whether this refers to the health of Africans or the health status of health systems on the continent – remains grossly neglected and ignored. Despite the fact that Africans have by far the highest disease burden in the world, and by far the lowest access to health services and funding, the continent and its peoples hardly feature as a priority area for the study and practice of Global Health Governance or the Global Health Humanities. ‘Health in Africa’ only really features in two instances: as a monolithic construct (1) in the study of Health Security (where Africa represents health insecurity, the great unwashed), and (2) as the object, the recipient of external health ‘best practice’ policy measures conceived of and prescribed by the global development industry.

Since colonial times Africa has been and continues to be the object rather than the subject of health sovereignty. There is no more dramatic illustration of this than even a cursory view of who is represented in the World Health Assembly, on the editorial boards of academic journals devoted to the study of global health and disease, or in the senior management of UN and specifically multilateral health agencies. The global health scholarly agenda is set by and for a mostly white and a mostly Western audience. This book series aims to democratize the global health agenda, and allow more voices to be heard by focusing on health in Africa from a social science perspective. It will include single-authored monographs, multi-authored books, edited collections, and high quality thesis conversions, aimed at postgraduate researchers, academics, policy workers nationally and multilaterally, and health governance practitioners.

To submit a book proposal for this series please contact:

Pieter Fourie [email protected] and Leanne Hinves [email protected]

3 Series Titles

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The Political Economy of Mental Illness in South Africa

The Political Economy of Mental Illness in South Africa

1st Edition

By André J van Rensburg
February 18, 2021

The book describes key socio-political reforms that helped shape post-apartheid South Africa’s mental health system. The author interrogates how reforms shaped public, community-based services for people living with severe mental illness, and how features of this care has been determined, in part...

Preventing HIV Among Young People in Southern and Eastern Africa Emerging Evidence and Intervention Strategies

Preventing HIV Among Young People in Southern and Eastern Africa: Emerging Evidence and Intervention Strategies

1st Edition

Edited By Kaymarlin Govender, Nana K Poku
December 31, 2020

This book provides an overview of the current epidemiology of the HIV epidemic among young people in Eastern and Southern Africa (ESA) and examines the efforts to confront and reduce the high level of new HIV infections amongst young people. Taking a multi-dimensional approach to prevention, the ...

The Normalization of the HIV and AIDS Epidemic in South Africa

The Normalization of the HIV and AIDS Epidemic in South Africa

1st Edition

By Katinka de Wet
September 04, 2019

This book explores the normalization of HIV and AIDS, reflecting upon the intended and unintended consequences of the multifarious "AIDS industry." The Normalization of the HIV and AIDS Epidemic in South Africa deals with the manner in which the HIV and AIDS epidemic has become such a well-known ...

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