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Medical sociology note


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The course imparts the basic concepts and understanding in Sociological and Anthropological subject matter, theories, concepts, trends and cultural systems. The course aims to impart the basic concepts and the knowledge in medical sociology/anthropology, socialization in health, culture and health, provider consumer relationships in public health, indigenous health care system and alternative health care practices.

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Medical sociology note

  1. 1. Compiled by: Ashok Pandey Visiting faculty Little Buddha College of Health Sciences 6/23/2019 1
  2. 2. MEDICAL SOCIOLOGY Professional endeavour devoted to social epidemiology, study of cultural factors and social relations in connection with illness, and the social principles in medical organisation and treatment – Charles Mclntire 1894 6/23/2019 2
  3. 3. MEDICAL SOCIOLOGY  social epidemiology to practice social medicine  to study social problems  to study cultural factors and social relation  to study social factors of family,society, and government about health or disease  to study social principles in medical organisation and treatment  to study social security 6/23/2019 3
  4. 4. Unit1: Sociology 6 Hours  Common terminologies: Sociology, Ethnicity, Mores, Folk Ways, Social System, Social Control, Social Disorganization, Social Problems, Acculturation, Enculturation, Socialization, Cooperation, Accommodation, Assimilation, Conflict, Modernization, Westernization, Sanskrtisation, Ethnomedicine, Ethnopsychiatry, Value, Beliefs, Perception, Knowledge, Attitude, Behavior, Custom, Habit, Self-Medication, Organization.  Historical development of society  Typological subject matter of sociology  Relationship of sociology with anthropology, psychology, public health and health education  Sociological contributions in public health 6/23/2019 4
  6. 6. Sociology Sociology is the scientific study of society, including patterns of social relationships, social interaction, and culture. The term sociology was first used by Frenchman Auguste Compte in the 1830s when he proposed a synthetic science uniting all knowledge about human activity. Sociology is the study of human social relationships and institutions. Sociology’s subject matter is diverse, ranging from crime to religion, from the family to the state, from the divisions of race and social class to the shared beliefs of a common culture, and from social stability to radical change in whole societies. 6/23/2019 6
  7. 7. Ethnicity  Term has its roots in the Greek word `ethnos’ meaning people. (We the people)  Ancient Greeks associate cohesive groups of people formed on the basis of kinship as Tribe or Race.  Ethnic groups were sub-divisions. Cohesive groups. 6/23/2019 7
  8. 8. Ethnicity Ethnicity is a term that describes shared culture —the practices, values, and beliefs of a group. This might include shared language, religion, and traditions, among other commonalities. 6/23/2019 8
  9. 9. Mores and Moral  Mores are the moral customs and moral rules that a group or society do as a matter of fact have.  “No shoes, no shirt, no entry.” “Do not spit in public.”  Moral, =principles of right and wrong and standards of conduct which are universally advocated, that is, are put forth as prescriptions which all persons who wish to be judged “moral” should follow. 6/23/2019 9
  10. 10. Folk Ways According to Reuter and Hart (1933), “The folkways are simple habits of action common to the members of the group; they are the ways of the folks that are somewhat standardised and have some degree of traditional sanction for their persistence”. Maclver and Page (1949) defined it as: “The folkways are the recognized or accepted ways of behaving in the society.” In simple terms, folkways are the customary, normal and habitual ways of the group to meet certain needs or solving day-to-day problems. The time of meals, the number of meals per day, the manner of taking meals—lunch or dinner, the kind of food used, the manner of its preparations, the manner of speech and dress, forms of etiquette and the numerous other facts of daily life are some of the examples of customary practices to which individuals conform in their personal habits. 6/23/2019 10
  11. 11. Getting in someone’s personal space 1.Taboo 2. Law 3. More 4. Folkway 6/23/2019 11
  12. 12. Eating three healthy meals a day 1.Law 2.More 3.Taboo 4.Folkway 6/23/2019 12
  13. 13. Values 1)Standards by which a culture judges an item good or bad 2)Broad ideas about what most people in a society consider to be desirable 3) Form the basis for norms 6/23/2019 13
  14. 14. Values Values represent basic convictions that- A specific mode of conduct or end-state of existence is personally or socially preferable to an opposite or converse mode of conduct or end-state of existence. Value is a judgmental element of what is right, good, or desirable. 6/23/2019 14
  15. 15. Social System An organization of individuals into groups or structures that have different functions, characteristics, origin or status. For example, a social system might break a larger population down into family groups, races, religious affiliations, gender, wealth categories and social classes. These demographic distinctions can be used by the marketing department of a business to better target their promotional and sales efforts. 6/23/2019 15
  16. 16. 6/23/2019 16
  17. 17. Social control Social control refers to the control of society over the individual. • Some social control implies a system of device through which society controls the activities of individual members. • Mannheim – “Social control as the sum of those methods by which a society tries to influence human behaviour to maintain a given order”. • Ogburn and Nimkoff – “The patterns of pressure which a society exerts to maintain order and established rules”. 6/23/2019 17
  18. 18. 6/23/2019 18
  19. 19. Social Disorganization  Social disorganization means breaking or dismantling or dispersing of the social system, social institutions and social relationships.  It increases when there is no general agreement and individuals define the important interests of the society in purely individualistic terms.  When there is a change in the equilibrium of forces or a breakdown of the social structure. 6/23/2019 19
  20. 20. Emile Durkheim considers social disorganization as a state of disequilibrium and a lack of social solidarity or consensus among the members of a society. Ogburn and Nimkoff said that when the harmonious relationship between the various parts of culture is disturbed, social disorganization ensues. 6/23/2019 20
  21. 21. Causes of social disorganization  Psychological factors include the social processes like imitation, conflict, compitition, accommodation.  Cultural factors: maladjustment in the existing institutions, cultural lag, cultural conflict.  Biological factors : include population explosion, interracial marriages, inter caste marriages.  physical factors include storms, earthquake, sea currents, tsunami etc.  Social Problems include unemployment., corruption.  Degeneration of values includes wars, criminality suicides etc  Others causes includes confusion of roles, lack of proper planning etc 6/23/2019 21
  22. 22. Social Problems The term “social problem” is usually taken to refer to social conditions that disrupt or damage society—crime, racism, and the like. Social problems represent conditions that should not be allowed to continue because they are perceived to be problems for society, requiring society to react to them and find remedies.6/23/2019 22
  23. 23. Acculturation  Definition  Acculturation is a process in which members of one cultural group adopts the beliefs and behaviors of another group.. 6/23/2019 23
  24. 24. Acculturation The adoption of the behavior patterns of the surrounding culture the process of assimilating new ideas into an existing cognitive structure. Defined culture change that occurs when two populations come into contact and has been treated in two ways: (1)as a unidimensional measure of the adoption of values, beliefs, norms and behaviours of another population, or (2)as a bidimensional measure of adherence to each of two cultures 6/23/2019 24
  25. 25. Assimilation the blending or fusing of minority groups into the dominant society 6/23/2019 25
  26. 26. Assimilation  Assimilation of one cultural group into another may be evidenced by changes in: 1. Language preference, 2. Adoption of common attitudes and values, 3. Membership in common social groups and institutions, 4. Loss of separate political or ethnic identification 6/23/2019 26
  27. 27. Conflict states that tensions and it arise when resources, status, and power are unevenly distributed between groups in society and that these conflicts become the engine for social change. society is made up of individuals competing for limited resources (e.g., money, leisure, sexual partners, etc.). 6/23/2019 27
  28. 28.  Originated from the efforts of Karl Marx.  Sustained by Wright Mills in some years later.  Societies have a tendency of being in conflict.  Distribution of power and wealth remains unequal.  Dominant groups employ power and authority in controlling most or all the other social structure aspects. 6/23/2019 28
  29. 29. Modernization it is the growth of economy, social , political, cultural life of group of the people in a positive way. It is a process socio cultural transformation. It is the process of change and involving values, norms, institution and structure. 6/23/2019 29
  30. 30.  Political dimensions of modernization involves creation of a modern nation or state.  Cultural modernization involves adherence to nationalistic ideology, belief in equality, freedom and humanism, a rational and scientific outlook.  Economic modernization involves industrialization accompanied with monetization of economy, increasing division of labor, use of management techniques and improved technology and the expansion of service sector.  Social modernization involves universalistic values, achievement motivation, increasing literacy and urbanization and the decline of traditional authority. 6/23/2019 30
  31. 31. Westernization Westernization is a process in which societies adopt western cultures in areas such as industry, technology, law, politics, economies and lifestyles, clothing, language etc. According to M.N. Srinivas, “Westernization” refers to “the changes brought about in the Indian society and culture as a result of over 150 years of British rule and the term subsumes changes occurring at different levels technology, institutions, ideology and values. 6/23/2019 31
  32. 32. Sanskritisation the process of cultural mobility in the traditional so­cial structure. It denotes the process by which caste or tribes placed lower in the caste hierarchy seek upward mobility by emulating the rituals and practices of the upper or dominant castes. It is a process similar to passing in sociological terms. 6/23/2019 32
  33. 33. M. N. Srinivas defined sanskritisation as a process by which "a low or middle Hindu caste, or tribal or other group, changes its customs, ritual ideology, and way of life in the direction of a high and frequently twice-born caste. Generally such changes are followed by a claim to a higher position in the caste hierarchy than that traditionally conceded to the claimant class by the local community 6/23/2019 33
  34. 34. Ethnomedicine Ethnomedicine is a study or comparison of the traditional medicine based on bioactive compounds in plants and animalsand practiced by various ethnic groups, especially those with little access to western medicines, e.g., indigenous peoples. 6/23/2019 34
  35. 35. Ethnomedicine is that branch of cultural medicine that produces and administers drugs by the use of plants and plant products while a herb in cultural medicine is a plant or plant material which can be used for therapeutic purposes. It could well be that the initial selection of plant materials for medicinal purposes was influenced by religious thoughts and, its collection and administration was accompanied by a magic ritual. It has also been proposed that knowledge of medicinal plants was gained by accident, although this theory has been refuted by a number of traditional medical practitioners who claimed that information on such plants was communicated to their ancestors in various ways (Akpata, 1979: Lambo, 1979). 6/23/2019 35
  36. 36. Ethnopsychiatry Ethnopsychiatry is that branch of medical anthropology focally concerned with mental health and illness. The systematic study of the psychiatric theories and practices of a primitive tribe. Its primary focus is, thus, the exploration of (a)culture that pertains to mental derangements, as (locally) understood” (b)Second, the field is the study of “culture and the abnormal.” The subject of ethnopsychiatry deals with the study of mental ill-nesses in cross-cultural perspective including its definition, classifica-tion, causality and treatment of mentally ill persons in differing contexts. 6/23/2019 36
  37. 37. Review Questions 1. How is the sociological imagination key to the study of sociology? a) It helps us imagine how people in other cultures function in daily life. b) It helps us develop hypotheses that we can test with statistical data. c) It helps us get beyond our personal beliefs and circumstances in order to examine things from a broader perspective. d) It helps us understand the broad array of theoretical approaches that can be used to study sociological phenomena. 6/23/2019 37
  38. 38. Review Questions 2. How did Emile Durkheim think that the division of labor contributes to organic solidarity in modern societies? a) Durkheim claimed that the division of labor creates more isolation in the work place as people’s jobs become more specialized, but that this in turn makes people invest more in remaining connected to one another outside of work, which overall helps strengthen society. b) Durkheim claimed that the division of labor teaches people the importance of cooperation and coordination which helps strengthen social cohesion. c) Durkheim claimed that the division of labor is a key social structure that helps bring order to a chaotic world by constraining social behavior. d) Durkheim claimed that people become more dependent on one another as the division of labor expands and that this interdependence provides social cohesion. 6/23/2019 38
  39. 39. Review Questions 3. According to Max Weber, _______ ideas and values shape society as much as ______ factors do. a) democratic; economic b) cultural; economic c) economic; religious d) capitalist; cultural 6/23/2019 39
  40. 40. Review Questions 4. Examining the interactions between people with a focus on how the people talk, dress, and use body language is an example of which theoretical approach to sociology? a) symbolic interactionism b) postmodernism c) feminist theory d) functionalism 6/23/2019 40
  41. 41. Review Questions 5. Which two theoretical approaches share the belief that sociological theory must be linked to political and social action? a) postmodernism and Marxism b) feminist theory and symbolic interactionism c) Marxism and feminist theory d) rational choice theory and postmodernism 6/23/2019 41
  42. 42. Review Questions 6. According to some postmodern theorists, such as Jean Baudrillard, how has the spread of electronic media affected society? a) It has disconnected us from real people and places and led to greater social isolation as we respond to signs and images that often have little to do with our everyday lives. b) It has made us more aware of cultural differences as we are exposed to a wider range of ideas and values. c) It has led to ever greater levels of consumerism as people are constantly reminded of things they don’t have that they would like to own. d) It has provided new ways for people to connect and create community. 6/23/2019 42
  43. 43. Review Questions 7. How can sociology have practical implications? a) Sociology can suggest new ways of evaluating major social transformations in history. b) Sociological studies are often used to assess the success, or failure, of policy initiatives in areas ranging from education to housing to sex discrimination. c) Sociology can shed light on the importance of social actors whose roles were previously ignored. d) Sociology empowers larger social institutions, not individuals, to alter conditions of inequality and injustice. 6/23/2019 43