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The following courses are being offered during the Fall 2019 semester. All of the courses listed are related to the health humanities and the undergraduate courses qualify for the undergraduate literature, medicine, and culture minor.

African, African American and Diaspora Studies

AAAD 300: Cultures of Health and Healing in Africa (HS, BN)
Lydia Boyd | TuTh 3:30-4:45 PM

This course explores contemporary economic, political, and social factors influencing the health and welfare of African peoples. Emphasis is placed on understanding the cultural perspectives that shape non-Western experiences of health, disease, and notions of spiritual and physical well-being. Readings draw from the fields of anthropology, history, and public health.


ANTH 147: Comparative Healing Systems (SS, GL)
Michele Rivkin-Fish | TuTh 9:30-10:45 AM + Recitation

In this course we compare a variety of healing beliefs and practices so that students may gain a better understanding of their own society, culture, and medical system.


ANTH 217: Human Biology in Comparative Perspective (PL)
Amanda Thompson | TuTh 9:30-10:45 AM

Students explore the biological and biocultural factors that shape human biology and health from the cellular to the societal levels. This course compares human biology, health, and development across a range of international settings. Students have the opportunity to analyze current research in human biology and conduct independent research.

ANTH 270: Living Medicine (SS)
Martha King | MWF 1:25-2:15 PM + Recitation
This course examines the social and cultural experience of medicine, the interpersonal and personal aspects of healing and being healed. It explores how medicine shapes and is shaped by those who inhabit this vital arena of human interaction: physicians, nurses, other professionals and administrators; patients; families; friends and advocates.
This course examines ways we can understand the history and culture of a region through the experience of health and healthcare among its people. With an anthropological approach, this course considers the individual, social, and political dimensions of medicalized bodies in the American South from the 18th century through the current day.
ANTH 897: STS/Controversy in Medical Sciences
Barry Saunders | T 10:15 AM-1:15 PM


ENGL 268H or 268: Medicine, Literature and Culture (LA) 
Jane Thrailkill | 8:00-9:15 AM + Recitation

From Dr. Frankenstein’s famous realization that he has indeed created a monster, to the savvy detection work of TV’s House, M.D., tales of mysterious patients and canny doctors have captivated audiences for centuries. What do the stories we create about disability and disease, about who (and what) has the power to heal, about the fear of death and desire for transcendence tell us about our culture, our history, and the experience of being human? This course will provide an introduction to Health Humanities, a new area of study that combines methods and topics from literary studies, medicine, cultural studies, and anthropology. We’ll read novels, screen films, learn about illnesses and treatments, and hear expert speakers as we investigate the affinities among literary representation, health sciences, and clinical practice. We’ll play close attention to how ideas about sickness have changed over time and across cultures. Topics will include the CLINICIAN-patient relationship, medical detection, the rise of psychiatry, illness and social exclusion, epidemics and the outbreak narrative, government eugenics programs, and the quest for immortality. My research interests are in the interdisciplinary intersections of critical theory (including science and technology studies, philosophy of science, posthumanism, ecocriticism, and race theory) and nineteenth- and early twentieth-century American literature. Focusing on texts by Edgar Allan Poe, Henry Adams, Charles Chesnutt, and Zora Neale Hurston, my first book, Universes without Us: Posthuman Cosmologies in American Literature (Univ. of Minnesota Press, 2013), examines heterodox American cosmologies that challenge the utopianism of both past (e.g., mesmerism, transcendentalism, evolutionary historiography) and present (e.g., posthumanism, radical ecocriticism) attempts at fusing self and environment, all of which fantasize not the death of the modern subject but its self-gratifying transformation.


ENGL 763: Introduction to Methods in Health Humanities
Kym Weed | Tu 11-1:50 PM

This interdisciplinary graduate seminar will introduce students to topics and methods in health humanities. In recent years, scholars have sought to define the field of health humanities as a broader and more inclusive set of research practices and objects of study than related fields like medical humanities. Therefore, this course will sample critical and creative texts that represent this field-expanding trend. Students will read foundational texts in health humanities as well as related fields including (critical) medical humanities, narrative medicine, disability studies, graphic medicine, and rhetoric of health and medicine. Together, we will aim to define the scope, methods, and values that constitute the field of health humanities.


Public Policy


Examines the uniqueness of the sociological perspective in understanding mental health and illness. Draws upon various theoretical perspectives to best understand patterns, trends, and definitions of mental health and illness in social context. Focuses on how social factors influence definitions, perceptions, patterns, and trends of mental health and illness.
SOCI 469: Health and Society (SS)
Liana Richardson | TuTh 11:00-12:15 PM and TuTh 12:30-1:45 PM
Max Reason | 9:05-9:55 AM
The primary objective of the course is to explain how and why particular social arrangements affect the types and distribution of diseases, as well as the types of health promotion and disease prevention practices that societies promote.