Medical Anthropology in Africa

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Course Code: 
SAP 2204
Course Credit Units: 
Semester 2
Year of Study: 
Year 2
Undergraduate or Graduate Level: 
Undergraduate Level
Course Discipline: 
Course Description & Objectives: 

This course examines beliefs about illness, healing, and the body across cultures. Lectures and readings will use case materials drawn from Africa, and Asia. The course start by distinguishing physical “disease” from cultural understandings of “illness” and will explore the ways that cultural conceptions shape the experience of illness. Students will then examine healing rituals in non-Western societies to explore the ways these rituals mobilize a community and help the patient to understand his/her condition. Next, students will turn to alternative healing cults within East Africa and to critiques of the standard “biomedical” approach to illness. Students will also look at ways approaches to childbirth, menstruation, and menopause is influenced by culture and politics. Finally, students will examine how beliefs about the body and illness are linked to social and political agendas examining case material from Africa, Australia, and the Americas. (This course is similar to Sociology of Health)

Medical Anthropology in Africa
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