Health, Illness, and Medical Care in Japan: Cultural and Social Dimensions

  • About the Book
  • This is one of the first attempts to explore the effects of social, political, and cultural variables on the interpretation of ideas about health, illness, and medical care in a technologically rich society. In this collection of essays, five anthropologists and one political scientist demonstrate that modern medical care in Japan is not a uniform, value-free scientific endeavor, but rather a culturally shaped part of a complex pluralistic medical system that is, itself, the product of a specific historical and social tradition.
    The comparative study of health, illness, and medical care provides a rich source of cross-fertilization of ideas among the social sciences. This collection of essays offers new insights on and raises new questions about contemporary Japanese society, biomedicine as a cultural product, and the transformation that occurs when medical knowledge and techniques are used in a different cultural milieu.

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