HLTC05H3 Lecture Notes - Lecture 9: Medicalization, Men..., Social Stratification

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3 Dec 2012
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HLTC05 Lecture 9
Biological diffs
o Area that still needs a lot of research
o Males/females have different predisposition to disease,
different health outcomes
o Females have greater inflammatory response following
infection by the flu
o Gender as a social determinant of health
Interlinked with biological and social determinants
Males linear relation between SES and social
hierarchy with health outcomes
Predict health outcome based on SES
straightforward explanation for MALES, females
don’t exhibit it as clearly
Female health more complex, interaction of bio
and social factors
Gender roles change over time, not static
Historical contingency has to be considered
Patriarchy: social system whereby women are
subordinated, lower in status/power than men...
Patrilineal property and title inherited by males
only
Patriarchy integrated into all aspects of life
o Gender paradox
Females on average live longer, but more likely to
experience those years as unhealthy ones
Explanation: behaviour of males, they do more
risky things (warfare,drugs)
o Cultural factors in female health
Unequal access to resources (social and material)
o Reproduction and inequality
Governments intruding on women’s health
Female subordination is not universal
State intervention regulates reproduction, social
stratification led to reproductive control (birth
control, abortion)
“medicalization of childbirth” – state organized,
childbirth is innate, considered a medical
condition now, reality is that most of history spent
giving birth the natural way compared to
medicalized process today
o female responsibilities
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