International events

Futures ahead: Translations and collaborations between medicine, the social sciences, and the humanities


11th-13th November 2020

Linköping University, Sweden

Deadline for Abstracts: June 1, 2020. Submit your abstract to: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Organizedby: the LiU Medical Humanities and Social Sciences network, which is part of the Swedish Network for Medical Humanities and Social Sciences.

Facing the rapid speed of new innovations and biotechnologies, medicine and health care are currently being transformed in numerous ways. The goal of personalized medicine, tailored to fit the individual patient's need, and the strive towards equality in health meet restructuring welfare states, health consumerism, and patients suffering from complex diseases. Medicine and health care also face increasing possibilities to screen and identify unrecognized disease in healthy, asymptomatic populations. Globally, the World Health Organization has identified multiple health challenges including outbreaks of communicable diseases as well as humanitarian crises caused by environmental pollution and climate change. The call for collaborations between medicine, the social sciences, and the humanities has perhaps never been stronger.

The research field of medical humanities, understood broadly, encompasses the humanities and the interpretative social science in and of medicine, as well as inquiries at the very intersection of medicine, the humanities, and the social sciences. It sets out from the presumptions that sociocultural, ethical, and political aspects play into the development and use of specific medical technologies and medical knowledge production, and that such technologies and knowledge production also evoke sociocultural, ethical and political questions. This research field also examines experiences of illness, suffering, and bodily and functional variations, and acknowledges that these experiences can evoke existential questions, which are central to the humanities and the social sciences. Further, the medical humanities offer tools to engage with questions of meanings, subjectivity, agency, ethics, and power.

We welcome papers that seek to engage in the conversation on critical intersections of the humanities, social sciences, and medicine. Topics include, but are not limited to:

Subjectivity, intersubjectivity and lived experiences of embodiment, illness, pain, pregnancy, birth, and dying; Affectivity and agency; Norms, values and sociocultural assumptions about bodies, body-parts, sex, race/ethnicity, gender, and specific diseases; Ethical analysis of/within medicine; Equality in health care; Structural discrimination within health care services; The co-production of society, medicine, science, and policy-making; Cultural diversity and concepts of health, disease, and illness; Knowledge production in medicine and the medical humanities; Local and global health challenges; Translations between medical research and clinical practice; Challenges and potentials in collaborations across research disciplines and professions.

See here for more information.