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Book cover: Advances in Medical Sociology

Advances in Medical Sociology

ISSN: 1057-6290
Series editor(s): Brea L. Perry

Subject Area: Sociology and Public Policy

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The role of social networks in health, illness, disease and healing: the accepting present, the forgotten past, and the dangerous potential for a complacent future


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Title:The role of social networks in health, illness, disease and healing: the accepting present, the forgotten past, and the dangerous potential for a complacent future
Author(s):Bernice A. Pescosolido, Judith A. Levy
Volume:8 Editor(s): Judith A. Levy and Bernice A. Pescosolido ISBN: 978-0-76230-881-1 eISBN: 978-1-84950-152-1
Citation:Bernice A. Pescosolido, Judith A. Levy (2002), The role of social networks in health, illness, disease and healing: the accepting present, the forgotten past, and the dangerous potential for a complacent future, in Judith A. Levy and Bernice A. Pescosolido (ed.) Social Networks and Health (Advances in Medical Sociology, Volume 8), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, pp.3-25
DOI:10.1016/S1057-6290(02)80019-5 (Permanent URL)
Publisher:Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Article type:Full length article
Abstract:Since the 1970s, the role of social networks in tracing the underlying epidemiology of illness, distress, disease and disability; and, in understanding how people identify and respond to these crises, has become a mainstay of social and behavioral science research. In this piece, we introduce the papers in this volume in three ways. First, we summarize basic tenants of a social network approach, laying out what research has been able to support to date. Second, to avoid the danger of continuing to do more and more network studies that merely replicate what we already know rather than opening up new areas of understanding, we return to the earliest roots of the social network perspective. Third, we use this review in tandem with the volume's papers to mark the cutting-edge boundaries of current research and to identify the issues and questions that remain.

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