BODIES IN TRANSITION -
POWER KNOWLEDGE AND MEDICAL ANTHROPOLOGY
EASA Medical Anthropology Network, 2017 Biennial Conference Network Meeting
5-7 July, Lisbon, Portugal
Local organization: Portuguese Anthropological Association (APA)
Venue: University of Lisbon, Institute of Social Sciences (Av. Prof. Aníbal Bettencourt, 9)
The conference held at the University of Lisbon was very successful with 243 participants, 37 panels, 177 paper presentations, and 43 sessions and has shown the broad variety and high-level quality of presented topics.
Annual meeting of the Network
Chair: Andrew Russell and Susanne Ådahl. Forty-one people attended this even at EASA2014 in Tallinn
Medical anthropology-themed panels at EASA2014 in Tallinn. The conference witnessed a range of these.
Encounters and Engagements: Creating New Agendas for Medical Anthropology
EASA Medical Anthropology Network / AAA Society for Medical Anthropology /
Universitat Rovira i Virgili Joint International Conference, Tarragona, Spain
June 12-15th 2013
Encounters and engagements – it is hard to imagine anthropology of any sort without them, and they are central to the practices and concerns of medical anthropology in particular. While ‘encounters’ suggests meetings and convergence, the question of when, where and on what terms an encounter takes place may raise issues of conflict, displacement and exclusion.
The consultation of clients and health professionals, patients and healers, has been of central concern to medical anthropologists, yet the domain of medical anthropology extends well beyond the encounters that occur through healing work in health settings. Encounters may involve the senses, feelings and emotions – desires, disappointments, pleasure and suffering – or they may be dispassionate, cold and clinical. Encounters can also involve quasi- or non-human agents – microbes, spirits, pharmaceuticals, medical technologies, experiments, governmental institutions, non-governmental organizations, weapons and words (amongst many others). They may be real, virtual or imagined, active or passive. And they may engender change of all sorts, leading to new identities, forms and trajectories.
By ‘engagements’, we recall the rich history of medical anthropologists’ engagement in change processes, in many different roles, in some cases collaborating with biomedical institutions to adapt their programs to social realities, in other cases engaging with recipients by giving voice to their concerns. Through such engagements with diverse actors, medical anthropologists have developed a host of new ways of doing research. It is this positionality of the medical anthropologist, and this mode of interaction with other disciplines and actors, that makes our work unique and important.