New Book Series “Transformations in Medical Anthropology”

Hansjörg Dilger; Bernhard Hadolt; Natashe Lemos Dekker; Rikke Sand Anderson

Source: Natashe Lemos Dekker

We are very excited to announce the launch of a new book series, “Transformations in Medical Anthropology”, which will be published by Palgrave Macmillan and which aims to break new ground in the field of medical anthropology. In particular, this book series invites proposals that address – and aim to push – Transformations in Medical Anthropology in thematic, conceptual and representational terms.

Thematic transformations
The core themes of medical anthropology – the entanglement of health-related ideas, practices and institutions with power relations and political economies – have become subject to change. The world is always in flux, but in an interconnected world the pace of change seems to be accelerating. Patients, health professionals and medical institutions are confronted with technological innovations, for instance in the fields of epigenetics, telemedicine and artificial intelligence, as well as transformations in the relationship between the environment and well-being. They are also challenged by climate change and bio-social entanglements, pandemic outbreaks, global demographic shifts, and the consequent restructuring of healthcare systems in the context of capitalist market expansion. How can medical anthropology contribute to our understanding of such transformations?

Conceptual transformations
Medical anthropology is seeking new ways of generating and analyzing ethnographic evidence for the study of health and well-being in the 21st century. How do we conceptually grasp the challenges – and opportunities – arising from the impact of translocal and global entanglements on people’s medical and health worlds? How do we understand the interconnectedness of multiple medical ontologies, the embodiment of health disparities, and the struggles of different actors to improve people’s well-being? This series aims to promote theoretical and methodological approaches that address these questions in collaboration with the actors in a researcher’s field sites. It also seeks to decolonize the production of knowledge in medical anthropology in relation to long-standing epistemic power relations and exclusions, for example by centering indigenous concepts and non-Western theory.

Representational transformations
We are interested in the ways in which medical anthropology can represent its conceptual and ethnographic findings to a wide range of audiences. How can new formats, genres and modes of representation – such as collaborative writing, mixed media books, graphic novels or imagistic representation be mobilized for the field of medical anthropology? What specific modes of representation are needed to engage with inter- and multi-disciplinary audiences? This series also encourages authors to diversify the production and representation of medical anthropological knowledge, for example through citation practices that include a wide range of scholars and academic cultures.

Diversity in authorship and editorial decision-making
We invite proposals for monographs and edited volumes from both established and early-career researchers – from the Global South as well as the Global North – who explore these questions on the basis of ethnographic research. We are particularly interested in submissions that aim to push and transform conceptual, methodological as well as representational debates in medical anthropology, both with regard to exploring the intersections with other sub-fields – e.g. political or legal anthropology, the anthropology of religion, race, and climate change – and current debates on decolonization, research ethics, multimodality, and public engagement. With this series, we are committed to ensuring diversity in authorship and editorial decision-making, as we see this as central for our own collaboration among the series editors and the editorial board.

Source: Pexels/Karolina Grabowska

The series will be led by four editors – Hansjörg Dilger (Freie Universität Berlin), Bernhard Hadolt (University of Vienna), Natashe Lemos Dekker (University of Amsterdam) and Rikke Sand Andersen (Aarhus University, University of Southern Denmark) – and an international board of editors:

  • Heide Castañeda (University of South Florida)
  • Lukas Engelmann (University of Edinburgh)
  • Lotte Meinert (Aarhus University)
  • Julaina Obika (Gulu University)
  • Branwyn Poleykett (University of Amsterdam)
  • Ruth Prince (University of Oslo)
  • Ivo Quaranta (University of Bologna)
  • Sabina Faiz Rashid (Brac University)
  • Fiona Ross (University of Cape Town
  • Merav Shohet (Boston University)
  • Bharat Jayram Venkat (UCLA)

Submission of book proposals
If you would like to submit a book proposal, please send it to the commissioning editor Elizabeth Graber ( and indicate that you are submitting to the “Transformations in Medical Anthropology” series. Please use the publisher’s guidelines for formulating the proposal. Further advise from the publisher on how to write a proposal can be found here. If you have any further questions about the series, please contact the editors below.

Editor’s bio statements
Hansjörg Dilger is a socio-cultural anthropologist and head of the Research Area Medical Anthropology | Global Health at Freie Universität Berlin. His research focuses on care relations in contexts of illness and dying; the micropolitics of affective and moral becoming; and transnational health and medicine. He is also interested in practices and conditions of knowledge production, especially in relation to ethical issues and different formats of public and collaborative anthropology. He is Co-PI of the transnational research project “Mobility Regimes of Pandemic Preparedness and Response: The Case of Covid-19.” Email:

Bernhard Hadolt is a social anthropologist with a particular interest in medical anthropology, especially the anthropology of biomedicine. He carried out research in Austria, Japan, and the Philippines on various topics revolving around social practices and policy making in the fields of assisted reproductive technology, genetic testing, vaccination and blood donation. Currently, he is a Senior Lecturer and Director of Studies at the Department of Social and Cultural Anthropology at the University of Vienna. Email:

Natashe Lemos Dekker is a cultural and medical anthropologist based at the University of Amsterdam. Her research focuses on ageing, end-of-life care, and grief and dynamics of time and future-making. She has published in the Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute, Culture, Medicine and Psychiatry, and Death Studies, among others. She held visiting fellowships at the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) and the University of Montreal. Currently, she is the PI of the Dutch Research Council funded project ‘Grief Politics: COVID-19-related loss and collective action in Brazil.’ Email:      

Rikke Sand Andersen is a medical anthropologist and former editor-in-chief of the medical anthropology journal Tidsskrift for Forskning i Sygdom og Samfund. She has written extensively on cancer, family medicine, and care seeking. She recently co-edited Cancer Entangled, Acceleration, Anticipation and the Danish State. Currently, her main interest is to further our understanding of “solo living” as an integrated part of human experimentation with being in the world, and its implications for care politics, inter-generational relations and welfare. Email:   

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