Social Medicine and the Coming Transformation: 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Social Medicine and the Coming Transformation

1st Edition

By Howard Waitzkin, Alina Pérez, Matt Anderson


288 pages

Purchasing Options:$ = USD
Paperback: 9781138685987
pub: 2020-04-01
Available for pre-order. Item will ship after 1st April 2020
Hardback: 9781138685970
pub: 2020-04-01
Available for pre-order. Item will ship after 1st April 2020

FREE Standard Shipping!


Social medicine, starting two centuries ago, has shown that social conditions affect health and illness more than biology does, and social change affects the outcomes of health and illness more than health services do. Understanding and exposing sickness-generating structures in society helps change them.

This first introductory textbook in social medicine provides a critical introduction to this increasingly important field. The authors draw on examples worldwide to show how principles based on solidarity and mutual aid have enabled people to participate collaboratively to construct health-promoting social conditions. The book offers vital information and analysis to enhance learners’ understanding about promoting health through social and individual means; the micro-politics of medical encounters; the social determination of illness; the influences of race, class, gender, and ethnicity; health and empire; and health praxis, reform, and sociomedical activism.

The book offers compelling ways to understand and to change the social dimensions of health and health care. Students, teachers, practitioners, activists, and people who take part in policymaking will value this book, which goes beyond the usual approaches of texts in public health, medical sociology, health economics, and health policy.

Table of Contents

Preface, Acknowledgements, 1. What Is Social Medicine? 2. One and a Half Centuries of Forgetting and Remembering the Social Origins of Illness 3. The Social Determination of Illness, Part 1: Health and Social Contradictions 4. The Social Determination of Illness, Part 2: Inequality, Class, Race/Ethnicity, Gender 5. Social Medicine in the United States 6. Health and Empire, Part 1: Empire’s Historical Health Component 7. Health and Empire, Part 2: Resisting Empire, Building an Alternative Future in Medicine and Public Health 8. Social Medicine in Latin America 9. Social Medicine and the Micro-Politics of Medical Encounters 10. Health Praxis, Reform, and Sociomedical Activism, Appendix: Organizations and Resources in Social Medicine, Index

About the Authors

Howard Waitzkin is Distinguished Professor Emeritus of Sociology at the University of New Mexico and practices internal medicine part-time in New Mexico and Illinois. For many years he has been active in struggles focusing on social medicine in the United States and Latin America. He is coordinator, with the Working Group for Health Beyond Capitalism, of Health Care Under the Knife: Moving Beyond Capitalism for Our Health (2018) and author of Medicine and Public Health at the End of Empire (2011), among other books.

Alina Pérez is an emergency medicine physician. A graduate of the University of Illinois College of Medicine at Rockford, she completed her residency at the Beth Israel Deaconess Harvard-Affiliated Medical Center in Boston. She has conducted research on health policy and is pursuing interests in global health and social medicine.

Matthew Anderson is Associate Professor in the Department of Family and Social Medicine in the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York City. As a family physician working in the Bronx, New York, he is a core faculty member of the Montefiore Residency Program in Social Medicine. He is founder and co-editor of the bilingual online journal Social Medicine/ Medicina Social.

Subject Categories

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