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Sites, Contexts and Beyond: Mapping Health Humanities

Journal: Media Watch (Vol.12, No. 1)

Publication Date:

Authors : ;

Page : 3-6

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As an emerging trans-disciplinary field of inquiry, health humanities actualizes C.P. Snow's vision, that is, to integrate “the two cultures” of sciences and humanities. Health humanities evolved from medical history/ethics and medical humanities via narrative medicine to form what is now called health humanities. Unlike scientific and medical approaches to disease, health humanities, while embracing the major stakeholders (patient/caregiver/doctors), offers insights into the experience of illness and how the individual constitutes the meaning of her health-related experiences. As health humanities demystify illness by talking of it, they also critique contemporary medical practices and their over-dependence on technologies at the expense of human empathy. The concerns of health humanities are too broad. They include the social determinants of illness, health justice, application of the creative arts, cultural contexts of medical care, global disparities, and ethical challenges in medicine. In recent times, particularly with the onset of COVID-19 pandemics, there is a discursive move to integrate planetary health, environmental and health humanities to emphasize interspecies intermingling, entangled existence, and embeddedness. Put differently, health humanities are many things at once because it works so well at different levels and, hence a significant cultural discourse in the post-millennial times.

Last modified: 2021-05-06 14:19:23