Encyclopedia of Medical Anthropology

2004 Edition
| Editors: Carol R. Ember, Melvin Ember

Health and Economic Development

  • Arachu Castro
  • Paul Farmer
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/0-387-29905-X_18

What is Economic Development?

Development A bridge with no river. A tall facade with no building. A sprinkler on a plastic lawn. An escalator to nowhere. A highway to the places the highway destroyed. An image on TV of a TV showing another TV on which there is yet another TV.

Eduardo Galeano

Most development paradigms are evolutionist and rest on a belief in the inseparability of a number of processes. As societies “evolve” toward higher degrees of technical, economic, demographic, and political complexity, improvements in health and education necessarily follow for the majority of the population.

The roots of modern theories of economic development can be traced to European social theory of the 18th century. In the early part of the century, Claude Henri de Rouvroy, Comte de Saint-Simon, set forth an organicist theory of social order. Blending scientific naturalism and the rationalism of the Enlightenment, this theory introduces the concept of an orderly progression of civilizations...


Gross Domestic Product Medical Anthropologist Development Assistance Committee Public Health Spending Social Justice Agenda 
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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic/Plenum Publishers 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  • Arachu Castro
  • Paul Farmer

There are no affiliations available