Anthropology | Biocultural Medical Anthropology
A205 | 27305 | Wiley


In this course we will explore health and disease from a biocultural
perspective, which incorporates the evolutionary, ecological, and
socio-cultural context of health and disease in trying to answer the
general questions:  why do we get sick, and, why is there variation in
risk of getting sick and getting/staying well.  Our level of analysis
will constantly shift from the macro-level of evolutionary theory and
political economy to the micro-level of genetics and microbes to
understand how these act on human biology in the production of ill
health.   We will be concerned with how these different types of
analysis have implications for the clinical practice of medicine.  A
variety of health topics will be covered, including childhood,
reproductive, infectious, chronic and stress-related disease.  This
course does require that you not be afraid of learning some basic
human biology, which will be elaborated as relevant throughout the
semester.

Overall Objectives:  To understand the determinants of health within
an evolutionary and ecological perspective and the clinical
implications of such a perspective, the major sources of ill-health,
the historical roots of the distribution of contemporary diseases, and
how variation in social, cultural, and economic forces produces
variation in disease and well-being. This course is an excellent
companion to Anthropology E260, which takes a more socio-cultural
approach to health and illness.