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Reading Film 

Reading Film
Chapter:
Reading Film
Author(s):

Lorenzo Servitje

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780190918514.003.0005
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date: 03 April 2020

Films reflect and influence values, practices, and the cultural contexts in which they are produced and consumed. In terms of health humanities, reading film allows us to investigate how we “see” certain types of bodies, illnesses, and medical practices, revealing tensions, contradictions, and assumptions about health that have become cultural myths—naturalized narratives or beliefs that illustrate a common cultural ideal. Reading film as a research method for health humanities requires attention to narrative and filmic elements at both the level of individual scenes and the film as a whole. Reading film provides a unique way to understand the broader social impacts of medicine and develops a visual literacy to interrogate how health and medicine shape and are shaped by a given cultural moment.

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