579 episodes

Interviews with Scholars of Medicine about their New Book
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    • Science
    • 4.7 • 13 Ratings

Interviews with Scholars of Medicine about their New Book
Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/medicine

    Bradley Schurman, "The Super Age: Decoding Our Demographic Destiny" (Harper Business, 2022)

    Bradley Schurman, "The Super Age: Decoding Our Demographic Destiny" (Harper Business, 2022)

    Societies all over the world are getting older, the result of the fact that we are living longer and having fewer children. At some point in the near future, much of the developed world will have at least twenty percent of their national populations over the age of sixty-five. Bradley Schurman calls this the Super Age. Today, Italy, Japan, and Germany have already reached the Super Age, and another ten countries will have gone over the tipping point in 2021. Thirty-five countries will be part of this club by the end of the decade. This seismic shift in the world population can portend a period of tremendous growth--or leave swaths of us behind.
    In The Super Age: Decoding Our Demographic Destiny (Harper Business, 2022), Schurman explains how changing demographics will affect government and business and touch all of our lives. Fewer people working and paying income taxes, due to outdated employment and retirement practices, could mean less money feeding popular programs such as Social Security and Medicare--with greater numbers relying on them. The forced retirement or redundancy of older workers could impact business by creating a shortage of workers, which would likely drive wages up and result in inflation. Corporations, too, must rethink marketing strategies--older consumers are already purchasing the majority of new cars, and they are a growing and vitally important market for health technologies and housing. Architects and designers must re-create homes and communities that are more inclusive of people of all ages and abilities.
    If we aren't prepared for the changes to come, Schurman warns, we face economic stagnation, increased isolation of at-risk populations, and accelerated decline of rural communities. Instead, we can plan now to harness the benefits of the Super Age: extended and healthier lives, more generational cooperation at work and home, and new markets and products to explore. The choice is ours to make.
    Galina Limorenko is a doctoral candidate in Neuroscience with a focus on biochemistry and molecular biology of neurodegenerative diseases at EPFL in Switzerland. To discuss and propose the book for an interview you can reach her at galina.limorenko@epfl.ch.
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    • 1 hr 4 min
    Rebekah Lee, "Health, Healing and Illness in African History" (Bloomsbury, 2021)

    Rebekah Lee, "Health, Healing and Illness in African History" (Bloomsbury, 2021)

    In Health, Healing and Illness in African History (Bloomsbury, 2021), Rebekah Lee makes an overall assessment of the history and historiography and health, healing and illness in the African context. This unique text is divided in two parts. In the first half of the book, Lee presents a chronological survey and analysis of the ideas and literature that multiple disciplines have produced while studying the experience of health and illness, as well as medical and healing practices in Africa. This part of the book guides readers through seminal questions about African agency and sources that are central to our understanding of the historiography of Africa in general, and to the study of healing and illness in particular. 
    By starting her narrative in the precolonial past, Lee is not only trying to highlight the value of the research that has been done in this area, but also provide the reader with a wider intellectual and chronological context that can reframe our reading of the literature that exists for the colonial and postcolonial periods. In the second part of the book, Lee examines four case studies each focused on a particular health problem: HIV/Aids, mental illness, malaria and sleeping sickness, and occupational lung disease. In each of these individual studies, Lee offers both a historiographical review and a critical assessment of the ideas and questions that have shaped our views of these issues. She also offers examples of primary sources that illustrate the complex ways in which scholars, from many different disciplinary backgrounds, have used them to draw conclusions about how Africans have experienced health and illness, and engaged with a wide range of healing practices over time.
    Esperanza Brizuela-Garcia is an associate professor of history at Montclair State University.
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    • 1 hr 19 min
    Harry Yi-Jui Wu, "Mad by the Millions: Mental Disorders and the Early Years of the World Health Organization" (MIT Press, 2021)

    Harry Yi-Jui Wu, "Mad by the Millions: Mental Disorders and the Early Years of the World Health Organization" (MIT Press, 2021)

    In 1948, the World Health Organization began to prepare its social psychiatry project, which aimed to discover the epidemiology and arrive at a classification of mental disorders. In Mad by the Millions: Mental Disorders and the Early Years of the World Health Organization (MIT Press, 2021), Harry Y-Jui Wu examines the WHO's ambitious project, arguing that it was shaped by the postwar faith in technology and expertise and the universalizing vision of a “world psyche.” Wu shows that the WHO's idealized scientific internationalism laid the foundations for today's highly metricalized global mental health system.
    Examining the interactions between the WHO and developing countries, Wu offers an analysis of the “transnationality” of mental health. He examines knowledge-sharing between the organization and African and Latin American collaborators, and looks in detail at the WHO's selection of a Taiwanese scientist, Tsung-yi Lin, to be its medical officer and head of the social psychiatry project. He discusses scientists' pursuit of standardization—not only to synchronize sectors in the organization but also to produce a common language of psychiatry—and how technological advances supported this. Wu considers why the optimism and idealism of the social psychiatry project turned to dissatisfaction, reappraising the WHO's early knowledge production modality through the concept of an “export processing zone.” Finally, he looks at the WHO's project in light of current debates over psychiatry and global mental health, as scientists shift their concerns from the creation of universal metrics to the importance of local matrixes.
    Harry Yi-Jui Wu is Associate Professor in the Cross College Elite Program and Department of Medical Humanities and Social Medicine at National Cheng-Kung University in Taiwan.
    Kelvin Chan is a PhD Candidate at McGill University. His PhD dissertation focuses on the history of psychiatry and mental health care in colonial Hong Kong.
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    • 1 hr 11 min
    Brendan Borrell, "The First Shots: The Epic Rivalries and Heroic Science Behind the Race to the Coronavirus Vaccine" (Mariner Books, 2021)

    Brendan Borrell, "The First Shots: The Epic Rivalries and Heroic Science Behind the Race to the Coronavirus Vaccine" (Mariner Books, 2021)

    Heroic science. Chaotic politics. Billionaire entrepreneurs. Award-winning journalist Brendan Borrell brings the defining story of our times alive through compulsively readable, first-time reporting on the players leading the fight against a vicious virus. The First Shots: The Epic Rivalries and Heroic Science Behind the Race to the Coronavirus Vaccine (Mariner Books, 2021), soon to be the subject of an HBO limited series with superstar director and producer Adam McKay (Succession, Vice, The Big Short), draws on exclusive, high-level access to weave together the intense vaccine-race conflicts among hard-driving, heroic scientists and the epic rivalries among Washington power players that shaped 18 months of fear, resolve, and triumph.
    From infectious disease expert Michael Callahan, an American doctor secretly on the ground in Wuhan in January 2020 to gauge the terrifying ravages of Disease X; to Robert (Dr. Bob) Kadlec, one of Operation Warp Speed’s architects, whose audacious plans for the American people run straight into the buzz saw of the Trump White House factions; to Stéphane Bancel of upstart Moderna Therapeutics going toe-to-toe with pharma behemoth Pfizer, The First Shots lays bare, in a way we have not seen, the full stunning story behind the medical science “moon shot” of our lifetimes.
    Galina Limorenko is a doctoral candidate in Neuroscience with a focus on biochemistry and molecular biology of neurodegenerative diseases at EPFL in Switzerland. To discuss and propose the book for an interview you can reach her at galina.limorenko@epfl.ch.
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    • 43 min
    Academic or Trade Publisher? How Do You Decide?

    Academic or Trade Publisher? How Do You Decide?

    Tune in to hear Prof. Talya Miron Shatz, author of Your Life Depends on It: What You Can Do to Make Better Choices About Your Health (Basic Books, 2021) discuss her surprising decision to publish her book with a non-academic publisher and how her writing and revision were driven by her desire to get her book into thousands of homes around the world.
    Avi Staiman is the founder and CEO of Academic Language Experts.
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    • 46 min
    Peter A. Swenson, "Disorder: A History of Reform, Reaction, and Money in American Medicine" (Yale UP, 2021)

    Peter A. Swenson, "Disorder: A History of Reform, Reaction, and Money in American Medicine" (Yale UP, 2021)

    Tracing the dramatic conflicts both inside organized medicine and between the medical profession and the larger society over quality, equality, and economy in health care, Peter A. Swenson illuminates the history of American medical politics from the late nineteenth century to the present. Disorder: A History of Reform, Reaction, and Money in American Medicine (Yale UP, 2021) chronicles the role of medical reformers in the progressive movement around the beginning of the twentieth century and the American Medical Association’s dramatic turn to conservatism later. Addressing topics such as public health, medical education, pharmaceutical regulation, and health-care access, Swenson paints a disturbing picture of the entanglements of medicine, politics, and profit seeking that explain why the United States remains the only economically advanced democracy without universal health care. Swenson does, however, see a potentially brighter future as a vanguard of physicians push once again for progressive reforms and the adoption of inclusive, effective, and affordable practices.
    Stephen Pimpare is director of the Public Service & Nonprofit Leadership program and Faculty Fellow at the Carsey School of Public Policy at the University of New Hampshire.
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    • 36 min

Customer Reviews

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13 Ratings

13 Ratings

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