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Panel VI: Making World Health — Local Moments and Global Moments

Huang Yongping (1954-2019) - La Carte du Monde 2000

Huang Yongping (1954-2019) - La Carte du Monde 2000

This panel investigates the role of epochal events in the contemporary field of global health policies and in the history of medicine in China. The panelists investigate how epochal events have shaped our understanding of global health as a transdisciplinary area of research and study. It will inquire whether such events have created multiple worlds of health, thus creating ruptures so great as to shatter any one history, one geopolitical explanatory framework or one analytical approach to global health. The panel approaches these events from the perspective of numerous actors. We take the perspective of a pathogen (e.g. COVID-19 or SARS), of a medicine, medical technology or medical concept (e.g. the Sinopharm Covid vaccine, an acupuncture needle or a carbohydrate), of an individual health worker (e.g. a specialized or a barefoot doctor), and of a host (e.g. a bat or a dog, a mink or a human). We hereby take seriously the transformative power of a single term shaping historical discourse around health (e.g. yingyang as nutrition), as well as the power of those wielding a term to shape such events (a historian or a health policy maker). We focus on the interconnections between these numerous actors and thereby cross analytical boundaries (the human-animal, the conceptual-material, the current-historical) and scrutinize the continuities and changes that these events entailed over time, as well as the uniting and fracturing processes these events have caused across space. Collectively we ask what consequences the succession of worlds of health and especially the coexistence of multiple worlds of health will have for our understanding of Chinese history and for our visions of China’s future in world health.


June 17, 2023, 9:15 - 11:15 AM


Chair: Elena Meyer-Clement (University of Copenhagen)

Harald Bøckman (University of Oslo)

An Epochal Event Unfolding: Wuhan in the Spring of 2020

Igor Sevenard (Freie Universität Berlin)

SARS in Hongkong as an Epochal Event

Chen Hao (Peking University / Fellow Heidelberg)

Non-human Animals in a Human Pandemic: Entangled Histories

Emily Graf (Tübingen University / Associate Member Berlin)

The Barefoot Doctor Transgressing Worlds of Health?

Liu Chao (Nanjing University / Fellow Berlin)

Ushering Nutrition and Nutriology into Everyday Life: A Conceptual History of yingyang in Republican China (virtual presentation)