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Cornell University    
  Feb 19, 2018
Courses of Study 2017-2018
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ANTHR 4682 - Healing and Medicine in Africa

(crosslisted) ASRC 4682 , BSOC 4682  
Spring. 4 credits. Student option grading.

Prerequisite: at least one course in Social Sciences or Humanities. Co-meets with ANTHR 7682 /ASRC 7682 /BSOC 7682 .

S. Langwick.

Healing and medicine are simultaneously individual and political, biological and cultural. In this class, we will study the expansion of biomedicine in Africa, the continuities and changes embodied in traditional medicine, and the relationship between medicine, science and law. We will explore the questions African therapeutics poses about the intimate ways that power works on and through bodies. Our readings will frame current debates around colonial and postcolonial forms of governance through medicine, the contradictions of humanitarianism and the health “crisis” in Africa, and the rise of new forms of “therapeutic citizenship.” We will examine the ways in which Africa is central to the biopolitics of the contemporary global order.

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