Successful Societies: How Institutions and Culture Affect Health

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9780521516600: Successful Societies: How Institutions and Culture Affect Health

Why are some types of societies more successful than others at promoting individual and collective well-being? Focusing on population health as an indicator of social success, this book opens up new perspectives on the ways in which social relations condition health and the public policies that address it. Based on four years of dialogue among scholars from diverse disciplines, it offers social epidemiologists broader views of the social determinants of health and social scientists a sense of the fascinating puzzles of population health. The chapters consider health inequalities in the developing, as well as developed, world. They locate their roots, not only in economic resources, but in the social resources provided by the institutions and cultural repertoires constitutive of social relations. They examine the AIDS epidemic in Africa, the sources of the health gradient, the role of collective imaginaries, destigmatization strategies, and the historical basis for effective health policies.

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Book Description:

Focusing on population health as an indicator of social success, this book examines how social institutions and cultural frameworks affect health and the policies that address it. Built on dialogue among diverse disciplines, it offers social epidemiologists and social scientists broader perspectives on the social determinants of population health.

About the Author:

Peter A. Hall is Krupp Foundation Professor of European Studies at Harvard University and Co-Director of the Successful Societies Program for the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research. He is the author of Governing the Economy (1986) and more than seventy articles in comparative political economy. He is an editor of many books, including Changing France: The Politics that Markets Make (2006), Varieties of Capitalism: The Institutional Foundations of Comparative Advantage (2001), and The Political Power of Economic Ideas (1989).

Michèle Lamont is Robert I. Goldman Professor of European Studies and Professor of Sociology and African and African-American Studies at Harvard University and Co-Director of the Successful Societies Program. She is the author of Money, Morals, and Manners (1992), The Dignity of Working Men (2000), How Professors Think (2009), and edited books such as Cultivating Differences (1992), The Cultural Territories of Race (1999), and Rethinking Comparative Cultural Sociology (2000). She is serving as Chair of the Council for European Studies.

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