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Introduction: Raising Health Humanities 

Introduction: Raising Health Humanities
Introduction: Raising Health Humanities

Craig M. Klugman

and Erin Gentry Lamb

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date: 30 March 2020

This introduction offers a definition of the growing field of health humanities. Emerging from medical humanities, whose primary focus has been on the physician and patient relationship, health humanities is a larger enterprise; it studies health, which is broader than just medicine, within its sociocultural context, which reflects the historical biases of cultures. Practitioners come to health humanities with diverse disciplinary training, and thus research methods vary broadly within the field. What unites these methods, and the field, is a focus on applied research driven by shared values, particularly a commitment to social justice. Health humanities is a transdisciplinary field, wherein much research aims to engage external stakeholders in the research itself, and to translate the results of that research back to those stakeholders in beneficial ways. The chapters of this volume represent only some of the diverse methods of research within health humanities, but will allow the reader to sample and practice several different modes of health humanities inquiry.

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