Amherst showing of Unnatural Causes May 19th

Please see the announcement below. I encourage all of you who can to attend. This will be a good way to see how Unnatural Causes is received by an Amherst audience, to gauge the conversation that may surround the Northampton showing, and to think about ways to plan for the Northampton photo exhibition.

The Town of Amherst
The Town of Amherst Department of Public Health

As part of its work on Social Justice and Health Equity, The Town of Amherst and the
The Town of Amherst Department of Public Health is extending a special invitation to: Town Meeting and Select Board members; Amherst Residents, and all interested people to a screening and discussion of:

UNNATURAL CAUSES: Is Inequality Making Us Sick?

Date: 19 May 2009
Time: 5:00—7:00
Place: Amherst Cinema

The screening will include a forum—Implications of inequality and health for the Amherst community: A dialogue among participants—facilitated by Dr. Barbara J. Love and introductions by Amherst Public Health Director, Epi Bodhi.

Light refreshments will be served on site prior to the screening
The Screening will be followed by a reception at Amherst Coffee

For more information, please visit our blog
Our thanks to Amherst Cinema and Amherst Coffee for your community support

Photovoice Exhibition Announcement and news

Message from Xanthi Scrimgeour:

The exhibition is scheduled for Friday, June 5th (World Environment Day) at
the Senior Center Community room from 5:30-8:30
. It is a nice space,
it’s on the bus route and can fit seating for 150 people (to view the
unnatural causes video) as well as photo exhibition space.

I’ve been wanting to schedule an organizing meeting for the health
department staff, volunteers and interns — so let’s see if we can
schedule a time that everyone can make. What times are usually best for
you? Sarah (who is organizing our media for the event — thanks Sarah!),
works early on Monday and Thursday am, so if folks could do Thursday the
30th at 9am that would be great. Let me know your thoughts and keep in
mind that I am happy to conference folks in by phone. If there are interested
students in the Public Health and Social Justice class, please send them my way.

Also, no worries, if the 30th doesn’t work I’m sure we can find another day.

Our next full planning meeting will be May 4th from 1:30-3 at the DPH
regional office here in Northampton (23 Service Center Rd.), which students in the class are invited to
attend (although I know it’s getting close to finals so I can also keep you posted!)

Change in reading assignment for Week 11

I am reducing the number of readings you have for next week. (Note: If you have already posted a blog response and have responded to the two readings that I am cancelling for next week that is fine).

Please read the following and comment on them in your blog responses.
1. “Theorizing inequalities in health: The place of lay knowledge,” Popay et al.
2. “My journey through the whirlwind,” Dan Bar-On
3. “Developing a methodology: Narratives and stories,” Dan Bar-On
4. “Story-telling in the Israeli Jewish and Palestinian context,” Dan Bar-On

Week 11 readings, post your comments here, note change in syllabus!

Please post your comments to week 11’s (formerly week 13’s) readings on action research here.

Note that we have shifted around three week’s on the syllabus: Next week (week 11), you will read what should have been read for week 13 and you will focus on planning for your photovoice groups in class. Group presentations have been shifted back a week, so that those who were to present next week will present during week 12 and those who were to present during week 12 will present during week 13. Please email me if you have questions about this.

Reading suggestion

Hello class! As I page through many of the readings that I have assigned for our class thus far for the semester, I am continually scold myself that I didn’t assign a really important book for this class, which would have provided a richer historical, political, and socio-economic context for much of what you are reading this semester. I would strongly recommend that you take a look at the book The Shock Doctrine: The Rise of Disaster Capitalism, by Naomi Klein (2007), New York: Metropolitan Books. Klein’s book provides an excellent analysis of the ways that neoliberal economic policies a la Milton Friedman have affected the course of political history in various areas of the world. Her chapters cover events that you may have read or heard about in the past, but her analysis takes a much more critical perspective than what you would read in the mainstream media. A more complex understanding of these events is crucial to unpacking the ways that social injustice affects public health (broadly conceived).