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Undergraduate Module Descriptor

ANT3085: Health, Illness and Bodies in Contemporary Society Part 1: Medicine and Social Control

This module descriptor refers to the 2022/3 academic year.

Module Aims

This module ‘Medicine and Social Control’ aims to unpack and critically analyse current academic theories on health, illness and medicine, taking an inter-disciplinary approach including medical sociology, medical anthropology and health psychology. It asks how and why 'health' has become a key social value and form of social control within contemporary Western society. It considers whether our lives have become ‘medicalized’, or taken over by medical professionals and solutions. It examines why health inequalities in class and gender persist. It also considers how and why medicine has become the ultimate ‘profession’, and how medical power is being challenged by new social forces. It also pays attention to the lived experience of being ill and how living a ‘healthy lifestyle’ has become a moral marker of goodness. It also considers how theories of health and illness drive health policy-making in the political and health-care systems.

Intended Learning Outcomes (ILOs)

This module's assessment will evaluate your achievement of the ILOs listed here – you will see reference to these ILO numbers in the details of the assessment for this module.

On successfully completing the programme you will be able to:
Module-Specific Skills1. demonstrate knowledge of, analyse and engage critically with, a range of theories, models and policies in relation to health, illness and medicine;
2. relate these perspectives to empirical studies and findings from interdisciplinary sources;
Discipline-Specific Skills3. demonstrate in writing and orally an ability to reflect upon, apply and criticise theoretical models in sociology/anthropology and conjectures generally;
4. demonstrate in writing and orally an ability to analyse sociological/anthropological empirical materials and critically engage with these materials involving complex reasoning;
Personal and Key Skills5. demonstrate in writing an ability to analyse, critically engage with, and report accurately on existing written material whilst articulating it within a structured and cogent argument;
6. demonstrate an appreciation of the interpersonal skills (e.g. empathy, ethical thinking) required to analyse and produce high quality research within the arena of health and illness; and
7. demonstrate the ability to work independently, within a limited time frame, and without access to external sources, to complete a specified task.