Multiple Medical Realities

Multiple Medical Realities : Patients and Healers in Biomedical, Alternative and Traditional Medicine

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Nowadays a plethora of treatment technologies is available to the consumer, each employing a variety of concepts of the body, self, sickness and healing. This volume explores the options, strategies and consequences that are both relevant and necessary for patients and practitioners who are manoeuvring this medical plurality. Although wideranging in scope and covering areas as diverse as India, Ecuador, Ghana and Norway, central to all contributions is the observation that technologies of healing are founded on socially learned and to some extent fluid experiences of body and self.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 224 pages
  • 152 x 229 x 17.78mm | 399g
  • Oxford, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 1845450264
  • 9781845450267
  • 3,564,569

Table of contents

List of Tables

List of Figures


by Thomas Csordas

List of Contributors

Chapter 1. Introduction: Body and Self in Medical Pluralism

Helle Johannessen


Chapter 2. Demographic Background and Health Status of Users of Alternative Medicine: A Hungarian Example

Laszlo Buda, Kinga Lampek and Tamas Tahin

Chapter 3. Taltos Healers, Neoshamans and Multiple Medical Realities in Postsocialist Hungary

Imre Lazar

Chapter 4. 'The Double Face of Subjectivity': A Case Study in a Psychiatric Hospital (Ghana)

Kristine Krause

Chapter 5. German Medical Doctors' Motives for Practising Homoeopathy, Acupuncture or Ayurveda

Robert Frank and Gunnar Stollberg

Chapter 6. Pluralisms of Provision, Use and Ideology: Homoeopathy in South London

Christine A. Barry

Chapter 7. Re-examining the Medicalisation Process

Efrossyni Delmouzou


Chapter 8. Healing and the Mind-body Complex: Childbirth and Medical Pluralism in South Asia

Geoffrey Samuel

Chapter 9. Self, Soul and Intravenous Infusion: Medical Pluralism and the Concept of samay among the Naporuna in Ecuador

Michael Knipper

Chapter 10. Experiences of Illness and Self: Tamil Refugees in Norway Seeking Medical Advice

Anne Sigfrid Gronseth

Chapter 11. The War of the Spiders: Constructing Mental Illnesses in the Multicultural Communities of the Highlands of Chiapas

Witold Jacorzynski

Chapter 12. Epilogue: Multiple Medical Realities: Reflections from Medical Anthropology

Imre Lazar and Helle Johannessen

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Review quote

" intriguing collection of articles exploring medical pluralism and bodily experiences from a largely European perspective." * American Anthropologist
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About Helle Johannessen

Helle Johannessen had a PhD in anthropology from University of Copenhagen and conducted research and teaching in medical anthropology from the mid-1980s. She was associate professor at the Institute of Public Health, University of Southern Denmark, where she was head of a research unit and a PhD program for social studies in medicine. In her research she studied medical pluralism in Denmark and Europe. She was involved with a comparative study of the use of complementary medicine among cancer patients in Denmark, Italy and India. She died in 2018.
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