- Rudolph Virchow Award
The Rudolf Virchow Awards are annual American awards in
About the Award
The Rudolf Virchow Awards are given by the Critical
Anthropologyfor Global Health Study Group, a special interest group of Society for Medical Anthropology. The professional award honors an article and the graduate and undergraduate student awards, a paper written in the spirit of Rudolf Virchow, that is deemed by the judges to best reflect, extend or advance critical perspectives in medical anthropology. These are materialist approaches that emphasize the social and political economic nature of health, disease and healing, and which embrace both micro and macro perspectives.
Rudolf Virchow, a German
physicianwriting during the 1800s, was a key founder of social medicine. In addition to writing in the areas of anthropology and medical science, his contributions to social medicinecentered on his recognition of the multiple interacting factors, particularly social factors, that produce disease and illness. He argued that the difficult circumstances and deprivations of the working class increase susceptibility to disease as well as to higher mortality rates. Virchow also recognized the political and material circumstances that inhibited disease prevention efforts and viewed advocacy as an essential part of medical research. He was perhaps most articulate about the limitations of medical science to improving health in the absence of material security. Virchow viewed the state as responsible for providing that security through employment of those who could work. His appreciation for the complex relationship among health, medicine and society are remembered in his statement, “Medicine is a social science, and politics is nothing more than medicine in larger scale”.
Criteria and Eligibility
The professional award is given annually for an article, singly or co-authored, and published during the previous year in either a peer reviewed journal (either a print or on-line journal) or an edited volume. This prize will be given to professionals, or to graduate students who have singly or co-authored the published work.
The graduate student award will be granted to a paper that was written in the prize year or the preceding year and that has not been subjected to the process of editorial review. Papers that have been submitted to a journal or edited volume, but that have not yet benefited from review, may be included in this category. Theses and dissertations cannot be accepted. However, a summary of a
thesisor a dissertation(no greater than about 30 pages) that can stand on it own, or a chapter that has been revised and can also stand on its own, will be considered for this award. Papers from students who have graduated after the paper was written will still be accepted under this category. Only papers, not interactive media, will be considered for this award.
The undergraduate student award will be given to a paper that was written the prize year or the preceding year while the student was still an undergraduate. Theses will not be accepted. However, a shortened version (up to about 30 pages) of the thesis (or a chapter from the thesis) that has been revised to stand on its own will be considered for this award. Only papers, not interactive media, will be considered at this time.
Past winners include:
*2007 - Professional Award:
Philippe Bourgoisand Jeff Schonberg- “Intimate Apartheid: Ethnic Dimensions of Habitus among Homeless Heroin Injectors”
*2007 - Graduate Student Award:
Krista Schumacher- “Beyond Cultural Competency: An Analysis of Key Variables Affecting Diabetes Care among Patients at an Urban Indian Health Clinic”
*2007 - Undergraduate Award:
Aki Nakanishi- “Protecting Indigenous Medical Knowledge: Confronting Biopiracy and Neo-cultural Imperialism”
Charles L. Briggs, Professional Prize for “Critical Perspectives on Health and Communicative Hegemony: Progressive Possibilities, Lethal Connections”
Seth Holmes, Graduate Student Prize for OaxacansLike to Work Bent Over: The Naturalization of Social Suffering among Berry Farm Workers”
Alexa Dietrich, Graduate Student Prize for “Corrosion in the System: The Community Health By-Products of Pharmaceutical Production in Northern Puerto Rico”
Paul Farmerand Arachu Castro, Professional Prize
João Biehl, Professional Prize
Michael Westerhaus, Graduate Student Prize
James Pfeiffer, Professional Prize
Sarah Willen, Graduate Student Prize
Hanna Garth, Undergraduate Student Prize
Barbara Rylko-Bauerand Paul Farmer, Professional Prize
Cesar Abadia, Graduate Student Prize
Scott Sang-Hyan Lee, Undergraduate Prize
Michael Ennis-McMillan, Professional Prize
Sarah Horton, Student Prize
Carolyn Smith, First Rudolf Virchow Student Prize
Donna Goldstein: AIDS and Women in Brazil: The Emerging Problem, Social Science and Medicine 39(7).
Hans Baer: How Critical Can Clinical Anthropology Be?, Medical Anthropology 15(3):299-317.
Soheir Morsy: Bodies of Choice: NorplantExperimental Trials on Egyptian Women .
Mark & Mimi Nichter: Hype and Weight, Medical Anthropology 13:249-284, 1991
Merrill Singer: Reinventing Medical Anthropology: Toward a Critical Realignment, Social Science and Medicine 30(2):179-187 (1990).
[http://www.medanthro.net/research/cah/virchow.html Critical Medical Anthropology of Health Interest Group]
* [http://www.aaanet.org American Anthropological Association]
* [http://www.medanthro.net/ Society for Medical Anthropology]
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