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Beyond sweet blood : perceptions of type 2 diabetes in Kahnawake


Beyond sweet blood : perceptions of type 2 diabetes in Kahnawake

Dow, Shannon Audrey (2006) Beyond sweet blood : perceptions of type 2 diabetes in Kahnawake. Masters thesis, Concordia University.

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MR14210.pdf - Accepted Version


This research explores perceptions of type 2 diabetes among Kahnawakero:non through insight provided by the subjective narratives of those living with the disease. Subjective narratives are considered within the theoretical framework of critical medical anthropology with regards to biomedicine, as well as in relation to biomedical diagnostic procedures for classifying diabetes and its treatment strategies. I extend existing anthropological research into diabetes by highlighting how subjective narratives reveal both a critique of and movement beyond the clinical and diagnostic encounter. I therefore suggest that subjective narratives of type 2 diabetes can be seen as a political discourse, in that they simultaneously provide insight into the place of individuals and populations within society, while revealing that---however real the physical complications associated with type 2 diabetes may be---not everyone agrees on the ways in which type 2 diabetes actually constitutes a "health problem." In the case of Kahnawake, perceptions of type 2 diabetes reveal that the health problem of the disease is not limited to sweet blood per se, but rather lies outside of the clinic and the body, and within broader social and political relations, and specifically, a community history.

Divisions:Concordia University > Faculty of Arts and Science > Sociology and Anthropology
Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Authors:Dow, Shannon Audrey
Pagination:viii, 119 leaves ; 29 cm.
Institution:Concordia University
Degree Name:M.A.
Program:Sociology and Anthropology
Thesis Supervisor(s):Howes, David
ID Code:8746
Deposited By: Concordia University Library
Deposited On:18 Aug 2011 18:34
Last Modified:18 Jan 2018 17:34
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