The Relevance of Social Science for Medicine

  • Leon Eisenberg
  • Arthur Kleinman

Part of the Culture, Illness, and Healing book series (CIHE, volume 1)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-x
  2. Clinical Social Science

    1. Leon Eisenberg, Arthur Kleinman
      Pages 1-23
  3. How Academic Physicians View the Social Sciences

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 25-25
    2. Robert G. Petersdorf, Alvan R. Feinstein
      Pages 27-48
  4. Social Supports: Influences on Health and Illness

  5. Illness Behavior

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 109-109
    2. Andrew C. Twaddle
      Pages 111-133
    3. Marilyn Bergner, Betty S. Gilson
      Pages 135-150
  6. Culture, Meaning, and Negotiation

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 163-163
    2. Byron J. Good, Mary-Jo Delvecchio Good
      Pages 165-196
    3. John-Henry Pfifferling
      Pages 197-222
  7. Illness Behavior

  8. Sociopolitical and Socioeconomic Analyses

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 331-331
    2. M. Harvey Brenner
      Pages 371-395
  9. Back Matter
    Pages 397-422

About this book


The central purpose of this book is to demonstrate the relevance of social science concepts, and the data derived from empirical research in those sciences, to problems in the clinical practice of medicine. As physicians, we believe that the biomedical sciences have made - and will continue to make - important con­ tributions to better health. At the same time, we are no less fIrmly persuaded that a comprehensive understanding of health and illness, an understanding which is necessary for effective preventive and therapeutic measures, requires equal attention to the social and cultural determinants of the health status of human populations. The authors who agreed to collaborate with us in the writ­ ing of this book were chosen on the basis of their experience in designing and executing research on health and health services and in teaching social science concepts and methods which are applicable to medical practice. We have not attempted to solicit contributions to cover the entire range of the social sciences as they apply to medicine. Rather, we have selected key ap­ proaches to illustrate the more salient areas. These include: social epidemiology, health services research, social network analysis, cultural studies of illness behavior, along with chapters on the social labeling of deviance, patterns of therapeutic communication, and economic and political analyses of macro-social factors which influence health outcomes as well as services.


epidemiology health health care sociology

Editors and affiliations

  • Leon Eisenberg
    • 1
  • Arthur Kleinman
    • 2
  1. 1.Harvard Medical SchoolBostonUSA
  2. 2.School of MedicineUniversity of WashingtonSeattleUSA

Bibliographic information

  • DOI
  • Copyright Information Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 1981
  • Publisher Name Springer, Dordrecht
  • eBook Packages Springer Book Archive
  • Print ISBN 978-90-277-1185-4
  • Online ISBN 978-94-009-8379-3
  • Buy this book on publisher's site