Johannessen - Chapter 04 | eBooks | Non-Fiction

Johannessen - Chapter 04

Johannessen - Chapter 04 JohannessenMultiple_04 Instant Download Price
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Buy and Download Description Sickness requires us to acknowledge the double face of subjectivity, for people are subjects in relation to affliction, in that they form ideas about it and act upon it, and they are also subject to it as it strikes them down and sometimes resists their attempts to manage it. They undergo and undertake (Whyte 2002: 172). The 'double face of subjectivity', aptly summarised by Susan Reynolds Whyte, as undergoing and undertaking, points to one of the major challenges of Medical Anthropology: How to bring together perspectives of sociopolitical structures and power relations with perspectives of suffering, recovering and acting subjects (Johannessen, this volume). On the one hand, one needs to shed light on the processes by which subjects and objects of medical practices are constituted and medical knowledge is authorised. On the other hand, it is necessary to develop analytical tools which are capable of grasping the sometimes inconsistent acts of the people involved.1 Concerning this challenge Michael Lambek states: 'Agency is a tricky concept. Leave it out and you have a determinist or abstract model, put it in and you risk instrumentalism, the bourgeois subject, the idealised idealistic individual etc. But we can see how agents are always partly constructed through their acts — constituted through acts of acknowledgement, witnessing, engagement, commitment, refusal and consent' (Lambek 2002: 37). Sickness requires us to acknowledge the double face of subjectivity, for people are subjects in relation to affliction, in that they form ideas about it and act upon it, and they are also subject to it as it strikes them down and sometimes resists
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