33rd Annual Conference of the Association for Anthropology and Medicine (AGEM) – Radical Health. Doing Medicine, Health Care, and Anthropology of the Good

2nd to 4th October 2020, Berlin, Germany.



In contemporary times of proliferating neoliberalization, augmenting socio-economic disparity, environmental degradation, and political struggles around identities and belonging, health and well-being are becoming increasingly fragile. Entangled economic, ecological, social, cultural, and political factors affect people’s living environments and professional worlds and render health and health care provision a complicated affair.

The conference will explore the possibilities for a mutual cumulative learning process between practice and theory and converge anthropological, medical, and health epistemologies, to generate new research questions, induce innovative theoretical and practical approaches, and exceed conventional ways of knowing and doing health. We particularly aim at gauging possibilities for the formation of strategic collaborations of social scientists, medical professionals, public health experts, health activists, and other professionals toward transgressing boundaries between theoretically oriented academia and practice-oriented medicine and health care, and contribute to the continuous envisioning and implementation of anthropology, medicine and health care of the good.

Among other questions, we wish to discuss: How do innovative/radical projects and initiatives foster ‘good’ medicine and health care? What are the challenges to implementing respective visions in specific political-economic and socio-cultural contexts such as urban (super)diversity, transnational migration, austerity politics, ecological crises, and reemerging nationalism and authoritarianism? Which socio-material infrastructures do actors build on in order to counter structural impediments to their day-to-day work such as shrinking state investments in health?

Another set of questions concerns the conceptualizations and political implications of ‘radicality’ (and, for that matter, alterity) itself : Which registers of radicality and alterity are conducive to establishing effective alternative forms of designing and doing health care? Are explicit political demands for the alteration, if not abolishment of hegemonic institutions, more promising in the long run than the successive establishment of subversive small-scale spaces of alternative medical practice? What do relevant actors conceive as radically different in the first place? Who perceives whom to be radical for what reasons and to what effect?

General Information
Date: 2nd to 4th October 2020

Freie Universität Berlin
Kaiserswerther Str. 16-18
14195 Berlin

For more information and detailed program visit the website.

Published in GI-Mail 07/2020 (English edition).

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