Medical Consumerism | BTHX 8610/5000-001
Jan. 19-May 12
Two related movements have emerged in American health care. The first is an emphasis on medical enhancement, or the use of medical technologies to improve the looks, performance and psychological well-being of people who are healthy. The second is the submission of the American health care system to the machinery of consumer capitalism. This seminar will use an interdisciplinary set of texts to explore the implications of medical consumerism. How is the consumerist model of medicine shaping our concepts of disease and disability? What larger historical developments have led to our current situation? How are the tools of medical enhancement shaping the way we think about our identities and the way we live our lives?