AP/SOSC 3116 6.00
This course will focus on ‘the patient’ – both as a social construction and as an active agent. In the first section of the course, we will consider the ways in which patients are constructed and understood by those who have power over their lives. To do this we will look at the creation of ‘the patient’ as a medico-sociological typology, exploring how race and gender intersect in this process. In the second section of the course, we will evaluate patient agency and patient rights groups as differential power bases both within, and outside institutions, and analyse patient accounts of health and illness, the institutional experience and the patient-health practitioner relationship. This course will be run primarily as a seminar, with films and lectures included as well. Students will be expected to come to discussion groups prepared to discuss critically both the assigned reading and the document or ‘text’ chosen for that week. The seminar readings are academic articles on the weekly topic, but the documents will range from architectural blueprints for asylums to pages from a patient case history, to art.