UCL News


UCL heads emerging discipline of cultural medicine

17 January 2005

Several UCL academics, both young and established, have collaborated with scholars from Asia, Europe and the USA on an important new book on the emerging discipline of cultural medicine: National Healths: Gender, Sexuality & Health in a Cross-Cultural Context, published by UCL Press.

National Healths

Co-edited and contributed to by Michael Worton, Fielden Professor of French Language & Literature, the book contains 15 essays, divided into three areas: the politics of sickness and health, the representation of sickness and health and learning from sickness and health.

Professor Worton said that in today's globalised world it is increasingly important to understand the otherness of different societies and their beliefs, histories and practices: "This book focuses on a burning cultural issue: how concepts and constructions of gender and sexuality impact upon health, medicine and healthcare. Starting from the premise that health is neither a universal nor a unitary concept, it offers a series of interdisciplinary analyses of what sickness and wellbeing have been, are and can be."

National Healths includes essays by James N Agar, Lecturer in French & Comparative Literature, Dr Deborah Kirklin, Director of UCL's Centre for Medical Humanities and Dr Stephen Quirke, Curator of UCL's Petrie Museum of Egyptian Archaeology. The essays' authors hail from a range of backgrounds including anthropology, philosophy and political science and address an array of challenging and diverse areas including sex-work and migration, the representation of AIDS in literature, photography and the media, and the place of gender in ancient Egyptian papyri.

Professor Worton added: "This collection of essays demonstrates from different perspectives that health is not merely a physiological and medical issue, but also a cultural and ethical one."

To find out more about the book use the link below.

Links: National Healths