9th Global Conference
Making Sense Of: Health, Illness and Disease
Saturday 11th September – Monday 13th September 2010
Oriel College, Oxford
Call for Papers
This inter-disciplinary and multi-disciplinary project aims to explore the processes by which we attempt to create meaning in health, illness and disease. In previous years, this interdisciplinary conference has attracted delegates from around the world, including practising clinicians, academics from a variety of disciplines, and persons involved in community-based organizations.
At the beginning of the 21st Century, the world is facing a plethora of health problems, some of which could not have easily been predicted as recently as the last two decades of the last century. Globally, there are critical conditions brought about by war, persecution, mass migration, famine and gross social inequalities. In the ‘developed societies’, a combination of demographic and life-style factors is putting increasing pressures on health-care facilities that are in danger of fragmentation and under-funding. For its part, the general public is presenting practitioners with a challenging contradiction: on the one hand, people live longer than ever before and are, in some respects, healthier – but, on the other, the burden of chronic disease and ‘un-wellness’ is increasing, and so is the concern with health-related matters on the part of the ‘man and woman in the street’. The wellness/illness profile of to-day’s communities renders prevention as important as therapy – which, in turn, implies that prevailing social attitudes have a key role in the dynamics of health, illness and health care as an inter-related system.
The 2010 conference is extending a call for papers on any aspect of this complex set of circumstances. Because this is a very broad brief, we particularly welcome papers that address the following themes:
I. Health, Illness and Disease in a Globalised World
* Health, human rights and social justice
* Health, disease and citizenship
* Health and place
* Diasporas and disease
* Health, disease and international medicine
II. Systemic Problems in Health Care
* Managerial vs clinical imperatives
* Professional hierarchies and internal conflicts
* The speed of innovation
* The contested nature of evidence-based medicine
* Patients or clients?
III. Beliefs about Health
* Positive thinking, tranquillity and mindfulness
* Faith in diets (including water), eg vegan, low-carb, natural/organic
* Exercise, breathing
* Belief vs practice
* Fears: allergies, sensitivities, negative thinking, stress, contamination
* Puritanism and health beliefs
* ‘Healthism’ as the new religion
IV. Attitudes to Medicine/Healing
* Medicine as science
* Alternative/non-western approaches: evidence or ideology?
* Mistrust in ‘the system’ (‘medicine/science cannot explain everything’)
* Mistrust in the practitioners (lack of knowledge/competence/professionalism)
* Risk and trust in the medical encounter (including hospital stays)
* Litigation in the context of health care; the underlying complexities
V. Purveyors of information
* The media and the popularity of medical programs
* Personal networks
* Dr C. O. M. Puter – the role of the Internet
* Reflexivity in the system – how does public information feed back into health care?
300 word abstracts should be submitted by Friday 26th March 2010. If your paper is accepted for presentation at the conference, an 8 page draft paper should be submitted by Friday 13th August 2010.
300 word abstracts should be submitted to both Organising Chairs with the subject line “HID9 Abstract Submission”; abstracts may be in Word, WordPerfect, or RTF formats, following this order:
author(s), affiliation, email address, title of abstract, body of abstract
Please use plain text (Times Roman 12) and abstain from using footnotes and any special formatting, characters or emphasis (such as bold, italics or underline). We acknowledge receipt and answer all paper proposals submitted. If you do not receive a reply from us in a week you should assume we did not receive your proposal; it might be lost in cyberspace! We suggest, then, to look for an alternative electronic route or resend.
Joint Organising Chairs
Marie Curie Research Fellow
King’s College, London
Dr Rob Fisher
Priory House, Wroslyn Road, Freeland
Oxfordshire, OX29 8HR
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, counselling, 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
All papers accepted for and presented at this conference will be eligible for publication in an ISBN eBook. Selected papers maybe invited for development for publication in a themed hard copy dialogic volume(s) The conference is sponsored by Inter-Disciplinary.Net as part of the ‘Probing the Boundaries’ programme of research projects. It aims to bring together people from different areas and interests to share ideas and explore various discussions which are innovative and exciting.
For further details about the project please visit:
For further details about the conference please visit:
Dr Rob Fisher
Priory House, Wroslyn Road, Freeland, Oxfordshire. OX29 8HR
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