Skip to main content

Toward a New Definition of Health: An Overview

  • Chapter

Part of the Current Topics in Mental Health book series (CTMH)

Abstract

Recent developments in medicine, in mental health, and in the social sciences have called attention to the fact that the concepts “disease” and “health” can no longer be adequately defined in purely medical terms of the presence or absence of “symptoms.” We know, for example, that disease may exist in the absence of observed symptoms; that the incidence of disease in human groups is influenced by such demographic characteristics as age, social class, ethnicity, place of residence; and that the very labels “disease” and “health” are culturally determined. Similarly, we know that to promote the health of its people, society must do more than treat known diseases. It must upgrade environmental and social conditions, enable people to live a healthier, less stressful life-style, and focus on promoting the well-being of the “whole person” in the context of his social network.

Keywords

  • Scarlet Fever
  • Organic Disorder
  • Role Obligation
  • Medical Care System
  • Science History Publication

These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.

Buying options

Chapter
USD   29.95
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • DOI: 10.1007/978-1-4613-2991-6_1
  • Chapter length: 16 pages
  • Instant PDF download
  • Readable on all devices
  • Own it forever
  • Exclusive offer for individuals only
  • Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout
eBook
USD   84.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • ISBN: 978-1-4613-2991-6
  • Instant PDF download
  • Readable on all devices
  • Own it forever
  • Exclusive offer for individuals only
  • Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout
Softcover Book
USD   109.00
Price excludes VAT (USA)

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  • Bäsch, P. F. International health. New York: Oxford University Press, 1978.

    Google Scholar 

  • Cockerham, W. C. Medical sociology. Englewood Cliffs, N. J.: Prentice-Hall, 1978.

    Google Scholar 

  • Djukanovic, V., & Mach, E. P. Alternative approaches to meeting basic health needs in developing countries. Geneva: World Health Organization, 1975.

    Google Scholar 

  • Eckholm, E. P. The picture of health: Environmental causes of disease. New York: W. W. Norton, 1977.

    Google Scholar 

  • Engel, G. E. The need for a new medical model: A challenge for biomedicine. Science, 1977, 196, 129–136.

    PubMed  CrossRef  CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Fabrega, H. Disease and social behavior: An interdisciplinary perspective. Cambridge, Mass.: M.I.T. Press, 1974.

    Google Scholar 

  • Freidson, E. Profession of medicine: A study of the sociology of applied knowledge. New York: Dodd, Mead, 1970.

    Google Scholar 

  • Kolker, A. Change without tears. Paper presented at the Conference of the Office of International Health, San Diego, 1978.

    Google Scholar 

  • Martin, J. F. International health planning: Socioenvironmental dimensions and community participation. American Journal of Public Health, 1975, 65, 175–177.

    PubMed  CrossRef  CAS  Google Scholar 

  • Merton, R. K. Social theory and social structure. New York: Free Press, 1968.

    Google Scholar 

  • Parsons, T. The social system. New York: Free Press, 1951.

    Google Scholar 

  • Rosen, G. From medical police to social medicine: Essays in the history of health care. New York: Science History Publications, 1974.

    Google Scholar 

  • Sheehy, G. Passages: Predictable crises of adult life. New York: Bantam, 1976.

    Google Scholar 

  • Stokes, B. Local responses to global problems: A key to meeting basic human needs. Washington: Worldwatch Institute, 1978.

    Google Scholar 

  • Szasz, T. The theology of medicine. New York: Harper & Row, 1977.

    Google Scholar 

  • Twaddle, A. C., & Hessler, R. M. A sociology of health. St. Louis: C. V. Mosby, 1977.

    Google Scholar 

  • United Nations Statistical Yearbook. New York, 1976.

    Google Scholar 

  • Wilson, R. N. The sociology of health: An introduction. New York: Random House, 1970.

    Google Scholar 

  • Zborowski, M. Cultural components in responses to pain. Journal of Social Issues, 1952, 8, 16–30.

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information

Authors and Affiliations

Authors

Editor information

Editors and Affiliations

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

Copyright information

© 1979 Plenum Press, New york

About this chapter

Cite this chapter

Ahmed, P.I., Kolker, A., Coelho, G.V. (1979). Toward a New Definition of Health: An Overview. In: Ahmed, P.I., Coelho, G.V. (eds) Toward a New Definition of Health. Current Topics in Mental Health. Springer, Boston, MA. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4613-2991-6_1

Download citation

  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4613-2991-6_1

  • Publisher Name: Springer, Boston, MA

  • Print ISBN: 978-1-4613-2993-0

  • Online ISBN: 978-1-4613-2991-6

  • eBook Packages: Springer Book Archive