This course provides students insight into the relation between culture and child health and offers them anthropological methods to develop a child-centred perspective in this field.
In the last decades, social scientists have raised important questions concerning the existence of a specific child perspective and the role of children as creative social actors. In the field of medical anthropology, the critical situation of children in areas of conflict and extreme poverty lends a strong urgency to these questions. Devastating effects of economic marginalisation, wars and old and new epidemics create generations of children for whom the concepts of 'childhood', 'dependency', and 'health' have meanings very different from those in so called 'traditional societies' which were the focus of earlier ethnographies of childhood. The cultural diversity of urban populations, the effects of migration and displacement and the social marginalisation of minority groups challenge the structures, procedures and effectiveness of established health care institutions and their professionals.
The adult-child dichotomy deconstructed; cross cultural perspectives on child development and child learning; cultural determinants of child health; infant death; children; health agency; children and chronic illness; child refugees; the urban jungle; ADHD; ethnographic encounters with children, child to child approaches as a form of health education.
Each half-day session consists of a lecture and discussion, followed by individual and group assignments.
The AMMA is meant for social scientists in multidisciplinary research projects in the field of health and health care, and for physicians and other professionals of health care, such as Departments of Public Health and programs for prevention. The program is also useful for social scientists who wish to specialise in medical anthropology, as part of their PhD program planning and for academic staff of European universities planning to develop courses and/or research in medical anthropology.
Students have knowledge of the influence of culture on the well-being and health of children and they become acquainted with the child's perspective on health and health care. They have been introduced to qualitative research methods adapted to children, and to research in specific fields such as the urban child, children and medicine, and children and HIV/AIDS.
This module is an intensive course with a duration of two weeks. It brings together participants with a social science and medical background. During these two weeks students gain specialist knowledge in the field of children and health. They gain knowledge of theoretic approaches, concepts and qualitative research methods that they can apply in their home country. By applying the acquired knowledge and by sharing their expertise participants will strengthen the organization's functioning.
Tuition fees are adjusted annually. For up-to-date information, please see www.uva.nl/collegegeld (Dutch students) or www.uva.nl/tuition (international students).