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Introduction to Biosocial Medicine


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A compelling, clearly written, and original review of how social factors influence well-being, this timely and accessible book will greatly benefit students who intend to pursue further study in medicine. -- Mark J. Graham, Yale School of Medicine

Table of Contents

1. Understanding Human Behavior
The need to understand human behavior
What is behavior?
Well-being and the consequences of behavior
The impact of social inequality and social hierarchy on behavior
How cultural context affects behavior
Social group identity, status inequality, and behavior
Motivation as a key mediator of behavior
Personality: Who we are
Neural structure as a basis of behavior
Cognition: How we think and what we know
How social inequality and stressful childhood experiences impact cognition, behavior, and well- being
Connecting the causes of early adversity to well-being over the life course: Understanding the causal links and the interventions thathold the most promise
2. Behavior and Well-Being
Physical well-being
Physical well-being beyond life expectancy
Social well-being
3. Inequality and Well-Being
Racial and ethnic inequality in health in association with educational inequality
How does inequality in access to medical care affect health inequality?
The differing impact of low education and low income on the health of minority groups
The origins and meanings of the concepts of race and ethnicity in the United States
The changing demographics of the population in theUnited States
The disparate impact of inequality on Hispanics and blacks
4. Society, Culture, and Behavior
The impact of culture: The Cultural Cycle
Differing perspectives on the nature of social structure
The role of culture ininfluencing personality and behavior
Other contexts in which independence and interdependence Clash!
Acculturation: When people move across cultural boundaries
The role of social networks in affecting behavior

About the Author

Donald A. Barr, MD, PhD, is a professor of pediatrics and education (by courtesy) at Stanford University. He is the author of Introduction to U.S. Health Policy: The Organization, Financing, and Delivery of Health Care in America and Health Disparities in the United States: Social Class, Race, Ethnicity, and Health.


... Introduction to Biosocial Medicine: The Social, Psychological, and Biological Determinants of Human Behavior and Well-Being is well positioned to be an informative and timely text and I would recommend the book for anyone-students, scholars, or layperson- aspiring to ascertain an understanding of the many factors influencing human behavior and well-being. Research on Social Work Practice ... a coherent, essential text for anyone teaching or practicing in the health sciences, including social work. Choice

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