Christianne Stephens
Department of
Profile Research AN3330 AN4160 AN4330 AN4340

4160 3.0 Anthropology and Indigenous People's Health
Course Director: Christianne Stephens

Time: (Winter) Tues 2:30-5:30 VH 3005

From a medical anthropological perspective this course critically explores the historical and contemporary conditions of First Nations health, illness and healing, focusing primarily on the Canadian context and drawing from a variety of historical and contemporary places and issues. Students examine health inequities, policies and programs in historical, social, political and cultural context and in relation to the enduring effects of colonialism, including the social and embodied effects of a history of loss of indigenous land, culture, and political and economic autonomy.
The course begins with a brief overview of medical anthropology theory in relation to the study of indigenous health. Students then explore the history of disease in First Nations Canada as a reflection of the historical transformations of the relations between indigenous and colonizing nations, focusing on diseases such as smallpox, tuberculosis, diabetes and HIV/AIDS. Through the course students learn about indigenous histories and practices of care and healing as well as the ways in which First Nations communities, organizations and leadership are developing innovations in health knowledge and practices.
The course concludes with an analysis of health research modalities. Relevant issues are drawn from a range of current sources in order to explore the contemporary connections between health, disease, politics, culture, and representation.

Format: Three seminar hours

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