A Critical Anthropological Examination of
Corporate Products and Public Health
Edited by Merrill Singer, Ph.D. and Hans Baer, Ph.D.
Publisher: AltaMira Press
Almost every day there are fresh accounts plastered across newspaper headlines and broadcast solemnly on the evening news of consumer products, ostensibly designed to meet consumer wants and desires, that turn out to be deadly in their unintended effects. From a long and ever growing list of pharmaceutical products to children’s toys, the public health has suffered because very unsafe items regularly reach consumer hands. The costs are telling. In this book, we refer to these products as “killer commodities,” consumer goods produced and marketed by leading corporations that turn out before long to be highly dangerous and sometimes fatal for consumers or others. In retrospect, it is not uncommon to learn that producers of these toxic products had some degree of awareness that their goods might be hazardous, but the appeal of untold fortune pushed them to mass distribution. This edited volume, a companion to the recently published Unhealthy Health Policies (AltaMira 2004), will include original chapters from critical medical anthropologists and other health social scientists from around the world. Also included in the book will be chapters that address deadly aspects of the corporate production processes as well as health-threatening environmental destruction tied to commodity production.
United around a common theme of substantial consequence: what is the extent of harm wrought by unsafe, unsound, and inadequately tested consumer goods from manufacture to discard, the chapters in this book will address the ways in which the damage of dangerous corporate production is distributed in society in light of the existing configuration of social inequality between nations, social classes, ethnic/racial groups, and genders. Written in the vogue of the new public-focused anthropology, the book argues that the public has not been granted a full and complete airing of the public health aspects of many of the products they consume.
If you are interested in contributing a 30 page (double spaced) chapter for consideration for inclusion in this timely volume, please send a one page description with title, brief chapter overview, author(s) name and affiliations/discipline, availability to complete the chapter by the Spring 2006, and willingness to make changes in your draft based on comments by the editors, as well as inquires by July 15, 2005 to:
Merrill Singer firstname.lastname@example.org and Hans Baer email@example.com
Center for Community Health Research
Hispanic Health Council
175 Main St.
Hartford, CT 06106
(860)527-0856, EX. 253 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
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