January 2003 / Heidelberg

Workshop: “Research Methods in Medical Anthropology: Context, Ethic Implications and Positioning”

In this workshop we will discuss methods of Medical Anthropology research, especially their specific characteristics and problems in comparison with other anthropological research. In addition to the actual methods and work techniques we will concern ourselves with the consequences of dealing with suffering and illness. These are a special challenge for the researcher, especially in their ethical relevance. Studies in Medical Anthropology are often situated in an interdisciplinary context respectively explicitly separated from it. In this workshop we will try to position Medical Anthropology research with regard to other disciplines and social contexts/requirements.

(with input papers 15 min. + approx. 20 min. discussion)

9.00 – 9.10 Welcome (Angelika Wolf, Hansjörg Dilger)
9.10 – 9.30 Introduction (Yvonne Adam, Vera Kalitzkus, Michael Knipper, Johanna Offe)
[1] Research methods and techniques in Medical Anthropology (Chair: Johanna Offe)
9.30 – 10.40 Michael Knipper Research methods of Medical Anthropology – an overview.
11.00 – 11.30 Stefan Ecks Research methods of Medical Anthropology in university education.
10.40 – 11.10 Coffee break
11.10 – 11.45 Angelika Wolf The meaning of language in Medical Anthropology. Reflections on methods to discover metaphors in cultural context.
[2] Methodical consequences of dealing with suffering and illness (Chair: Yvonne Adam)
11.45 – 12.20 Vera Kalitzkus Subjectivity and reflexivity in the research process on topics related to illness, dying and death.
13.25 – 14.25 Open discussion (chaired by: Hansjörg Dilger, Michael Knipper)
12.20 – 13.00 Coffee break
13.00 – 14.10 Hansjörg Dilger “How to do research on the unspeakable”: Methodological implications of Anthropological research on families and HIV/AIDS in Tanzania.
Michael Knipper Treatment and observation. Consequences from the double role as a physician conducting anthropological research.
14.10 – 16.00 Lunch break
[3] Concerning the positioning of Medical Anthropology (Chair: Vera Kalitzkus)
16.00 – 17.10 Bernhard Wörrle Medicinal Plants, “Bio-piracy” and “Indigenous Knowledge” – Considerations on a delicate topic.
Yvonne Adam / Magdalena Stülb Applied Anthropology or the question of how to relate research in Medical Anthropology to the socio-political context.
17.10 – 18.00 Final discussion and perspectives (Chair: Michael Knipper)