World Health Day: An eBook Special

World Health Day is an opportunity to increase awareness about important health priorities around the world. This year we are taking the time to think about what health means in our cultural, political, and social landscape. Below is a curated list of fascinating, must-read studies analyzing health care policy change, addressing legal questions in children’s health, documenting racial inequality in health, and more. You can get each eBook for just $1.99 through the end of April!

Offer good through April 30, 2021, only available through US retailers

Just Medicine

A Cure for Racial Inequality in American Health Care

by Dayna Bowen Matthew

“Her ambitious book lays out a case for a legal remedy for racial health inequality.”—Los Angeles Review of Books

Just Medicine is necessary reading for all who envision a society in which health equity is a moral imperative. I would place Matthew’s contributions on the scale of Michelle Alexander’s transformational book, The New Jim Crow. Matthew not only documents the problem of color-blind racism but also provides solution-oriented road maps for a way forward.”—Political Science Quarterly

The Health of Newcomers

Immigration, Health Policy, and the Case for Global Solidarity

by Patricia Illingworth and Wendy E. Parmet

“Expertly explores health and its relation to immigrants and natives, arguing that global health is an important norm for all nations and global health threats have implications for all.”—Choice

“At a time when debate about migrants and health care has devolved to sound bites often devoid of facts, Patricia Illingworth and Wendy E. Parmet remind us that in order to build healthy and thriving communities, we must ensure that all people, regardless of socioeconomic or immigration status, should be able to get the quality, affordable health care they need when they need it. They make a persuasive, comprehensive argument that making access to health care a universal public good among all nations actually improves health outcomes for all of us.”—Marielena Hincapié,Esq., Executive Director, National Immigration Law Center

War and Health

The Medical Consequences of the Wars in Iraq and Afghanistan

Edited by Catherine Lutz and Andrea Mazzarino

Since 2010, a team of activists, social scientists, and physicians have monitored the lives lost as a result of the US wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Pakistan through an initiative called the Costs of War Project. Unlike most studies of war casualties, this research looks beyond lives lost in violence to consider those who have died as a result of illness, injuries, and malnutrition that would not have occurred had the war not taken place.

“Clearly and powerfully conveys the complex and multifaceted impacts of the U.S. wars in Afghanistan and Iraq on health, both in the countries where they are being waged and in the U.S.”—Janelle Taylor, University of Washington

Managing Diabetes

The Cultural Politics of Disease

by Jeffrey A. Bennett

Managing Diabetes represents the best that medical humanities has to offer and is relevant to health care professionals, humanities and arts scholars, social scientists, medical educators, and patients. Bennett offers an analysis of a chronic disease that intersects with many socio-cultural practices and beliefs about individualization, governmentality, medicalization, and epidemiology while being attentive to the stratification systems (i.e., race, class, gender) that organize all social life. Given that half the population of the US experiences diabetes, it is conceivable that this disease touches everyones life.”—Monica J. Casper, co-editor of Critical Trauma Studies

“If you’re at all interested in themes like TV and movie portrayal of diabetes, blame and shame in society, and how celebrity messaging impacts perception of the disease … check this book out. It certainly gets the mind going.”—Healthline

Toxic Shock

A Social History

by Sharra L. Vostral

“Vostral provides a history of the societal and medical contexts, events, and investigations that eventually revealed tampons and bacteria as co-producers of illness and thus a women’s health problem… Vostral uses the social history of toxic shock syndrome as a cautionary tale about the potential for other illnesses that could emerge from biocatalytic activity, and about the limits of health activism to provoke actions to ensure consumer safety.”—Choice

“Despite the corporate silence, Vostral has found a wealth of information: from medical reports and research, to legal papers and media coverage. Her assemblage of sources is never forced, but rather presents a Donna Haraway-esque combination of biology, technology, culture and gender… her book should be the standard text on TSS, rather than the corporate one-liner found in consumer goods.”—Social History of Medicine

Health Care in Crisis

Hospitals, Nurses, and the Consequences of Policy Change

by Theresa Morris

“Morris’s detailed focus on hardworking individuals at one hospital shows in microcosm the difficult strains that plague our health care system writ large; as such, this book stands as a cautionary tale.”—Choice

“Theresa Morris’s Health Care in Crisis offers an engaging treatment of organizational change. Using a community hospital as her focus, and the Affordable Care Act as the catalyst, she examines the ways in which institutional responses affect the nurse-patient relationship. Studying a maternity unit, and paying particular attention to care delivery, the author demonstrates that the ways in which health care systems are financed really matters.”—Beth Mintz, Author of Lesbians in Academia: Degrees of Freedom

Inequalities of Aging

Paradoxes of Independence in American Home Care

by Elana D. Buch

“Brilliant, illuminating, and wrenching, Buch’s extraordinary ethnography offers an intimate account of how the fate of older adults and the working poor who care for them are bound together, in a society that devalues both aging and care and is obsessed with independence. Penetrating and provocative, Inequalities of Aging makes a major contribution to the anthropology and sociology of aging, care work, and social inequality.”—Sarah Lamb, Author of White Saris and Sweet Mangoes and Successful Aging as a Contemporary Obsession

Blaming Mothers

American Law and the Risks to Children’s Health

by Linda C. Fentiman

“Professor Linda Fentiman offers a probing analysis of a society and its government that blames mothers for various social ills and conditions that plague American society and that intervene during pregnancy and motherhood. Professor Fentiman carefully studies this phenomenon and exposes the undercurrents of classism and racism that correspond to it. She explains how the pernicious nature of poverty creates impacts that result in significant health harms, including higher rates of lead poisoning and asthma among low income children of color. Sadly, in those instances too, mothers are blamed–sometimes civilly and criminally, making it risky to be a poor mother in America.”—Michele Bratcher Goodwin, Chancellor’s Professor of Law, University of California, Irvine

Contraceptive Risk

The FDA, Depo-Provera, and the Politics of Experimental Medicine

by William Green

“By far the most thorough account of the Depo-Provera story to date. Though we may never get clear answers about whether Depo-Provera has done more harm than good over the past few decades, this well-researched history will be of great interest to those in the public health and women and gender studies fields, as well as many women contemplating the use of Depo-Provera themselves.”—Judy Norsigian, co-author and co-founder of Our Bodies Ourselves and the Boston Women’s Health Book Collective

Living with Alzheimer’s

Managing Memory Loss, Identity, and Illness

by Renée L. Beard

“In this thorough and critical book, Renee Beard explores the medicalization, culture and experience of Alzheimers Disease in a breadth rarely encountered in sociological analyses of illness. This work should become a benchmark in the social studies of Alzheimers for a long time.”—Peter Conrad, author of The Medicalization of Society

Living with Alzheimers is an important empirical contribution to illness narratives about people with memory problems or experiencing forgetfulness. I highly recommend it to scholars interested in the sociology of diagnosis, social studies of dementia, and the sociology of ageing.”—Sociology of Health & Illness

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