Anthropology and Epidemiology

Interdisciplinary Approaches to the Study of Health and Disease

  • Craig R. Janes
  • Ron Stall
  • Sandra M. Gifford

Part of the Culture, Illness, and Healing book series (CIHE, volume 9)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-ix
  2. Historical and Theoretical Perspectives

  3. Infectious Diseases

  4. Non-Infectious Diseases

  5. Psycho-Social Conditions

  6. Back Matter
    Pages 333-349

About this book


Over the past two decades increasing interest has emerged in the contribu­ tions that the social sciences might make to the epidemiological study of patterns of health and disease. Several reasons can be cited for this increasing interest. Primary among these has been the rise of the chronic, non-infectious diseases as important causes of morbidity and mortality within Western populations during the 20th century. Generally speaking, the chronic, non­ infectious diseases are strongly influenced by lifestyle variables, which are themselves strongly influenced by social and cultural forces. The under­ standing of the effects of the behavioral factors in, say, hypertension, thus requires an understanding of the social and cultural factors which encourage obesity, a sedentary lifestyle, non-compliance with anti-hypertensive medica­ tions (or other prescribed regimens), and stress. Equally, there is a growing awareness that considerations of human behavior and its social and cultural determinants are important for understanding the distribution and control of infectious diseases. Related to this expansion of epidemiologic interest into the behavioral realm 'has been the development of etiological models which focus on the psychological, biological and socio-cultural characteristics of hosts, rather than exclusive concern with exposure to a particular agent or even behavioral risk. Also during this period advances in statistical and computing techniques have made accessible the ready testing of multivariate causal models, and so have encouraged the measurement of the effects of social and cultural factors on disease occurrence.


AIDS epidemiological epidemiology ethnography migration social medicine

Editors and affiliations

  • Craig R. Janes
    • 1
  • Ron Stall
    • 2
    • 3
  • Sandra M. Gifford
    • 4
  1. 1.Department of AnthropologyUniversity of ColoradoDenverUSA
  2. 2.Department of Urban StudiesRutgers UniversityNew BrunswickUSA
  3. 3.The Alcohol Research GroupBerkeleyUSA
  4. 4.Division of Community HealthState Health Commission of VictoriaAustralia

Bibliographic information

  • DOI
  • Copyright Information Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 1986
  • Publisher Name Springer, Dordrecht
  • eBook Packages Springer Book Archive
  • Print ISBN 978-90-277-2249-2
  • Online ISBN 978-94-009-3723-9
  • Buy this book on publisher's site