Universidade de Lisboa, 5-7th July 2017
It is open the call for papers for the panel 38 “Medical consumptions and local stakes: past, present and future(s) in Urban Africa”, in the context fo the Conference EASA: Medical Anthropology Network conference Bodies in transition that will take place on 5-7th of July 2017. The deadline for submission is April 1st, 2017 and the list of papers accepted will be announced on April 15th, 2017.
In this panel, we aim to explore how people use various medical consumptions as a means to satisfy social and individual needs, expectations and aspirations in sub-Saharan African contexts. We invite contributions based on empirical research and theoretical reflections, with a special focus on urban settings.
By and large, medical consumptions are often considered as means to cure, treat and/or restore physical, mental and social balance. However, there is an array of situations motivating medical consumption practices related not only to therapeutic but also to other stakes, going beyond health and illness. These often arise from social and individual pressures and/or expectations upon social roles, aspirations, lifestyles and bodily achievements. These local stakes, as well as the means to fulfill them, while rooted in specific historical, economic and cultural backgrounds, are dynamic and transitional.
Considering medical consumptions as the use of a variety of medical procedures, resources and expertise, we will discuss changes and continuities in social and individual aspirations, needs, and motivations, as well as in strategies and practices in medical consumption in urban Africa. How do individuals make use of available medical services, medicines (pharmaceuticals or other substances) and other devices to satisfy needs, expectations and aspirations? What are the meanings and the roles attributed to these different medical resources? What strategies do individuals use to access medical resources? How have the quests for medical consumption changed? What has changed in these processes? How does the circulation of (new) global medical technologies contribute to the transitionality of local stakes underlying medical consumptions? What do medical consumption and the purposes they serve tell us about processes of social reproduction and change?
We welcome papers addressing these and other related issues, based on empirical research and theoretical reflections.
Inês Faria, SOCIUS/ISEG, University of Lisbon [firstname.lastname@example.org]
Carla Rodrigues, AISSR, University of Amsterdam [email@example.com ]
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