Social Lives of Medicines

ISBN-10: 0521804698

ISBN-13: 9780521804691

Edition: 2003

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Description:

Medicines are the core of treatment in biomedicine, as in many other medical traditions. As material things, they have social as well as pharmacological lives, with people and between people. They are tokens of healing and hope, as well as valuable commodities. Each chapter of this book shows drugs in the hands of particular actors: mothers in Manila, villagers in Burkina Faso, women in the Netherlands, consumers in London, market traders in Cameroon, pharmacists in Mexico, injectionists in Uganda, doctors in Sri Lanka, industrialists in India, and policymakers in Geneva. Each example is used to explore a different problem in the study of medicines, such as social efficacy, experiences of control, skepticism and cultural politics, commodification of health, the attraction of technology and the marketing of images and values. The book shows how anthropologists deal with the sociality of medicines, through their ethnography, their theorizing, and their uses of knowledge.
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Book details

List price: $35.99
Copyright year: 2003
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Publication date: 1/30/2003
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 212
Size: 6.00" wide x 9.25" long x 0.75" tall
Weight: 0.748
Language: English

Introduction
An anthropology of materia medica
The Consumers
Mothers and children: the efficacies of drugs
Villagers and local remedies: the symbolic nature of medicines
Women in distress: medicines for control
Sceptical consumers: doubts about medicines
The Providers
Drug vendors and their market: the commodification of health
Pharmacists as doctors: bridging the sectors of health care
Injectionists: the attraction of technology
Prescribing physicians: medicines as communication
The Strategists
Manufacturers: scientific claims, commercial aims
Health planners: making and contesting drug policy
Conclusion
Anthropologists and the sociality of medicines
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