This inter-disciplinary and multi-disciplinary project aims to explore the processes by which we attempt to create meaning in health, illness and disease. The project will also examine the models we use to understand our experiences of health and illness (looking particularly at perceptions of the body), and to evaluate the diversity of ways in which we creatively struggle to make sense of such experiences and express ourselves across a range of media.
Papers, presentations, reports and workshops are invited on any of the following themes:
the 'significance' of health, illness and disease for individuals and communities; the factors which influence our perceptions of health and illness experiences
the concept of the 'well' person; the preoccupation with health; the attitudes of the 'well' to the 'ill'; perceptions of impairment' and disability; the challenges posed when confronted by illness and disease; the notion of being 'cured'; chronic illness; terminal illness; attitudes to death
how we perceive of and conduct ourselves through the experiences of health and illness; the effects on our sense of identity; our relationship with our own body; how others perceive us - family, friends, strangers, doctors, nurses, care givers
'models' of the body; the body in pain; biological and medical views of illness; the ambiguous relationship with 'alternative' medicine and therapies; the doctor-patient relationship; the 'clinical gaze'; the body as machine and the role of technology; the rise of genetics; manipulation of the body - transplantation, surgery; the body as resource; 'artificial' bodies; the impact of body 'models' on the person
the impact of health, illness and disease on biology, economics, government, medicine, politics, social sciences; the changing relationship between society and medical development; the potential influences of gender, ethnicity, and class; health care, service providers, and public policy
the nature and role of 'metaphors' in expressing the experiences of health, illness and disease - for example, illness as 'another country'; the role of narrative and narrative interpretation in making sense of the 'journey' from health through illness, diagnosis, and treatment; the importance of story telling; dealing with chronic and terminal illness; the 'myths' surrounding health, illness and disease
the relationship between creative work and illness and disease: the work of artists, musicians, poets, writers. Illness and the literary imagination - studies of writers and literature which take health, disability, illness and disease as a central theme.
Perspectives are sought from those engaged in:
art and art therapy, creative writing, English literature, history of medicine, media studies, the performing arts (dance, music, theatre), philosophy and ethics, psychology and social psychology, social sciences, sociology and socio-biology, theology and religious studies
anatomy, child care nursing, clinical psychology, counseling, gerontology, health education, health services, hospital administration, immunology, medical and surgical nursing, medicine and the medical sciences, pharmaceutical sciences, public health care
practitioners in health care fields - doctors, GP's, surgeons, health care workers, care givers, hospice workers
Papers will be considered on any related theme. 300 word abstracts should be submitted by Friday 11th April 2003. 8 page conference papers should be submitted by Friday 20th June 2003.
A themed volume arising from the work of the first conference is presently in preparation. All papers accepted for and presented at the conference will be published in an ISBN eBook. Selected papers accepted for and presented at the conference will be published in one or more themed volumes.
Papers should be submitted as an email attachment in Word or WordPerfect; abstracts can also be submitted in the body of the email text rather than as an attachment.
Further details and information about the "Making Sense of:" series of projects can be found at http://www.inter-disciplinary.net/mso.htm For specific information about the conference, please go to the site below.
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