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Medicine and Human Rights in Cross-cultural Perspective

Universiteit van Amsterdam

  • Beschrijving
  • Overzicht

This two-week winter course offers a multi-disciplinary perspective on a variety of issues in the field of medicine and human rights.

Human Rights Acts provide standards for medical care for victims of, for instance, war and torture. What is the role of culture in the application of such Acts in conflict and post-conflict situations around the world, including the Netherlands? How does intervention and prevention relate to survivors' perceptions? Caregivers and scientists are confronted with human rights, abroad and at home, when working in an asylum or a psycho-trauma center, in humanitarian NGO's such as AI and MSF, or in fieldwork and research. Power struggles generate human calamities.

Connections between health and human rights are often made by emphasizing universal values, while being reluctant to attach importance to the underlying social and cultural dynamics. In medical anthropology, this global and universal discourse is seen as problematic. Human Rights Acts are all too often rights that do not act. What are the reasons for that? The anthropological argument is that respect and righteousness presuppose an in-depth knowledge of what is at stake for the victims, perpetrators, politicians, bystanders, lawyers and doctors.


Violence in War and Peace: the Cultural Perspective; Pathological Power & The medical Anthropological Approach; Justice in Cultural Perspectives; reconciliation and empowerment; Psycho Trauma and healing; medical, legal-Political and anthropological; The Aftermath of Torture; Cultural Exile and Social Death; The Medical Profession and the Rights of Asylum Seekers, Refugees and "illegals".

instruction modes

The course is conducted in English and consists of interactive lectures, discussions and individual or group assignments.

job perspective

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.


What is the role of culture in the application of Human Rights Acts in conflict and post-conflict situations around the world? How to relate intervention and prevention to survivors' perceptions? What do human rights and wrongs mean to these stakeholders themselves? What do they perceive and signify as right and what as abuse? How do victims address their suffering if left to their own?

sustainable strengthening

This is an intensive course with a duration of two weeks. It brings together participants with a social science and medical background. During this period students gain specialist knowledge and insight in the field of MHR. They gain knowledge of theoretic approaches and concepts and of qualitative research methods. By applying the acquired knowledge and research skills and by sharing their expertise with other professionals, participants will strengthen the organization's functioning.

tuition fee

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).

Niveau N.V.T.
Vorm Full-time
Incompany Nee
Open inschrijving Nee
Doorlooptijd 2 weken
Kosten (indicatie) Tussen de €450 en €1350
Titulatuur Geen titel
Benodigde taalkennis Engels
Gefinancierd Privé
Afronding Certificaat