Medical Humanities, Society & Ethics Minor
As an interdisciplinary minor, medical humanities, society and ethics (MHSE) teaches students to use methods from the humanities and social sciences to examine issues related to illness, health, healthcare, the body and the mind in their social, cultural and historical contexts.
MHSE takes as its starting point the dual claim that the central human experiences of health and illness as well as the systems of knowledge that have emerged to classify them are culturally shaped phenomena. Bodies and minds experience illness; people suffer; they age; they die. But the meanings people attach to these processes are not givens in the natural world. They are rather forged within a particular society’s attitudes, values, beliefs and practices expressed through language, behavior, ritual and art. They are, moreover, contingent on time and place. Even the modern scientific discipline of medicine, its truth claims, and its terms are embedded in historical cultural domains. They have as much to do with attitudes to gender, race, socioeconomic status, relations of power, structures of authority and social hierarchies as they do with biology.
MHSE aims to bridge the gulf that exists between science and experience, biology and culture by challenging students to examine critically the origins and nature of their beliefs and values about illness and health as well as the beliefs and values embedded in their society’s social, cultural, educational, legal and political institutions.
MHSE students will learn that humanistic interpretive practices make cross-cultural and comparative studies of health and illness possible. The minor encourages students to take a broad community and global perspective on experiences of health and illness that address equity, policy and resource allocation.
Students are required to take 20 credits in courses that are on the approved list (see below) or that are approved by the minor advisory committee through a petition process. Independent studies, practica and transfer credits may also count for the minor with the approval of the committee.
- At least 4 credits must be at the 600 or 700 level.
- No more than 12 credits may come from the same department.
- At least 12 credits must be taken in residence at UNH.
- No more than 4 credits may be taken from courses outside of the College of Liberal Arts.
List of Approved Courses
|ANTH 525||Anthropology of the Body: Fat, Fitness and Form||4|
|ANTH 610||Medical Anthropology: Illness and Healing||4|
|ANTH 685||Gender, Sexuality and HIV/AIDS in Sub-Saharan Africa||4|
|ANTH 695||Globalization and Global Population Health||4|
|CLAS 550C||Identities and Difference in the Ancient World: Sex and Desire in Greece and Rome||4|
|ENGL 415C||Literature and Medicine||4|
|ENGL 787||English Major Seminar (Only topic: Literature and Medicine)||4|
|GERM 798||Special Studies in German Language and Literature (Only topic: Narrating Madness in German Literature)||4|
|HIST 437H||Honors/The Mad Among Us: A Global History of Mental Disorder||4|
|HIST 440B||Honors/Medicine, Society, Science, and the Law: Who Makes Your Health Care Decisions?||4|
|HIST 498||Explorations of Historical Perspectives (Only topics: Pandemic! From the Black Death to Coronavirus or Childhood in Global History)||4|
|HIST 500||Introduction to Historical Thinking (Only topic: Landscape, Environment and Disease)||4|
|HUMA 526||Humanities and Science (Only topics: The Undead Humanities and Cognitive Science of Religion)||4|
|PHIL 410||Happiness, Well-Being , and a Good Life||4|
|PHIL 424||The Future of Humanity: Science, Technology, and Society||4|
|PHIL 440B||Honors/Who's Human Now?||4|
|PHIL 447||Artificial Intelligence, Robots, and People||4|
|PHIL 630||Neuroscience and Philosophy||4|
|PHIL 660||Law, Medicine, and Ethics||4|
|PHP 908||Public Health Ethics (undergrads allowed with special permission)||3|
|PSYC 733||Drugs and Behavior||4|
|PSYC 736||Attention Disorders||4|
|SOC 570||Sexual Behavior||4|
|SOC 620||Drugs and Society||4|
|SOC 625||Mental Health and Society||4|
|SOC 635W||Medical Sociology||4|
|SOC 720||Sociology of Drug Use||4|
|SOC 788||Advanced Medical Sociology||4|
- Students must receive a grade of C- or better for a course to count toward the minor requirements.
- Once students have declared the minor, they are required to meet with the coordinator or appropriate core faculty advisor at least once per year for regular review and assessment of their program, learning outcomes and progress toward the degree.