Development and Public Health in the Himalaya
By Ian Harper
To Be Published January 1st 2014 by Routledge – 208 pages
This book charts important social and political transitions in Nepal through the lens of medicine. It engages with a range of issues - mission health care institutions, tuberculosis as a sight of ethnographic inquiry and medical intervention, the pharmaceuticalization of mental health and public health, development ideologies and the attempted creation of modern subjects and citizens to advance the health of the nation. Based on two decades of experience, both as a physician and public health professional and an anthropologist, the author presents these issues through four case studies of health programme intervention in Palpa district to show the inter-related aspects of the processes. He explains how local realities align with, resist, and are complicated by globalized narratives and practices of health and development. The book also pays careful attention to traditional healers, infectious disease, micronutrient initiatives, mental health and the historical, ideological, and political-economic context of mission-based development work. It offers a holistic picture of the challenges and possibilities for action that exist in Nepal today, and will be of interest to academics in the field of medical and development anthropology and those working on health and development and global health.
1. Introduction 2. Palpa and Its Healing Traditions 3. "The view from the clinic": Healing as viewed from the perspective of the modern 4. "Caught in the middle": Power, efficacy and healing 5. "It’s the Sweet Smell of Gold" – A Particular History of the Mission Hospital 6. Introducing Psychiatric Services 7. Capsular Promise as Public Health and the Vitamin A Programme 8. Creating Order from Treatment Chaos: Implementing Protocols and the Control of Tuberculosis 9. Conclusion 10. After-word: The Maoist Insurgency and Its Effects
Ian Harper is Senior Lecturer in Social Anthropology at the University of Edinburgh, UK.