The module is organised around the general theme of a discussion of current debates in the sociology of health, illness and medicine drawing on both theoretical and empirical research. More specific themes will include: the social construction of health and the changing boundaries between health and illness; medicalisation and the discovering of new mental and physical illnesses ; narratives of illness and identity in the context of chronic illness and disability assessing the value of concepts such as 'biographical disruption': the changing structure, nature and regulation of medicine and the explanatory power of the new sociology of professionalism.; the political sociology of medicine which explores the relationship between the state and organised interests such as the pharmaceutical industry; changing approaches of the public /patients to maintaining health and managing illness in the context of a culture of consumption where health and lifestyle might be seen as commodities and maintaining a healthy body keeps control over an uncertain and changing world ; trust, risk and mental health ; consideration of the growth in the use of non-orthodox health care and the development of medical pluralism and a discussion of the relationship between structure and agency in the context of social inequalities in health.
Total contact hours: 22
Private study hours: 178
Total study hours: 200
Method of assessment
Main assessment methods
Coursework - essay (5,000 words) - 100%
Annandale, E (2014) The Sociology of Health and Medicine 2nd edition, Polity, Cambridge
Blaxter M (2007) Health: Key Concepts, Polity, Cambridge
Gabe J and Calnan M (2009) The New Sociology of the Health Service Routledge, London
Gabe J and Monaghan L (2013) Key concepts in Medical Sociology, Sage, Los Angeles
Nettleton S (2013)The Sociology of Health and Illness, Polity, Cambridge
White K (2009) An Introduction to the Sociology of the Health and Illness,2nd edition, Sage Los Angeles
See the library reading list for this module (Canterbury)
The intended subject specific learning outcomes are as follows. On successfully completing the module students will be able to:
1.Critically and systematically examine advanced theories, concepts and research in the field of the sociology of health and illness
2.demonstrate a critical and systematic understanding of theoretical and practical debates in health policy and social medicine
The intended generic learning outcomes are as follows. On successfully completing the module students will be able to:
1.identify and critically assess a comprehensive range of evidence and arguments
2.formulate problems; creatively and systematically hypothesise possible solutions; supporting arguments with evidence,
3. recognise the influence of theoretical concepts and perspectives on the questions asked, evidence sought and solutions proposed.
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Credit level 7. Undergraduate or postgraduate masters level module.
- ECTS credits are recognised throughout the EU and allow you to transfer credit easily from one university to another.
- The named convenor is the convenor for the current academic session.
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