Category Archives: Health/Medicine

The Structuring of Agency

I have sought to make the case that for all that agency has causal power it is always structured. It is hardly a novel thesis. Over the past months, however, I have been asked two interesting questions. The first, posed by Mark Carrigan somewhere is cyberspace, is that surely my ‘greedy bastards hypothesis’ (GBH) in… Read More »

The Health of the ‘Greedy Bastards’

There are two queries that have been put to me regarding the health of those ‘greedy bastards’ that feature in my greedy bastards hypothesis (GBH). The first was posed back in the early ‘noughties’. ‘Is your argument’, my interrogator enquired, ‘that the greedy bastards live longer than the rest of us?’ It made me question… Read More »

A Word or Two More About ‘Asset Flows’

I was asked in passing the other day about my notion of ‘asset flows’ and in consequence I felt another blog coming on. The aim here is to show how and why I think it a useful as well as a credible ‘meta-sociological’ concept. First of all, what do I mean by asset flows (with… Read More »

Negative Dialectics in Trondheim

I have just undertaken the annual pilgrimage to Trondheim for the St Aksel health sociology workshop (and am now, incidentally, chilling with Annette and Marianne Hedlund at out-of-the-way Sparbu, a guest of Bodil Landstad and her delightful family). My contribution to the workshop was a paper entitled ‘the virtues of dialectical critical realism in health… Read More »

Tromso, eHealth and Social Theory

Tromso lies within the arctic circle but was bathed in sunshine as a group of local and overseas experts on eHealth – plus Annette and I – met to pool our resources. It was to be one day on the university campus in Tromso discussing a study of the role of video conferencing in the… Read More »

The Assault on ‘Our’ NHS!

Some blogs should be expressions of indignation, and this one certainly is. Not that being angry/passionate can be allowed to obstruct evidence-based argument. Towards the tail end of 2011 Wendy Savage and I responded to medical students moving on from campaigns against the threefold hike in student fees and the abolition of the EMS to… Read More »

GBH: Greedy Bastards and Health Inequalities

Over a decade ago, in a calculated bid to rile and provoke engagement with other sociologists, I formulated the ‘greedy bastards hypothesis’ (GBH). This asserted that health inequalities in Britain were first and foremost an unintended consequence of the ‘strategic’ behaviours at the core of the country’s capitalist-executive and power elite. It is a hypothesis… Read More »

Disability colloquium: declining a Tory invitation

Open Letter Dear George Eustice, Re – Invitation on behalf of the ‘Conservative Disability Group’ Executive Committee to attend the Third Annual Disability Colloquium to be addressed by Esther McVey, Minister for Disabled People Thank you very much for this invitation. On reflection I have decided that the most effective way I can serve the… Read More »

Stigma and mental illness

This is a first blog written on my own account, so it’s offered with a degree of diffidence. At least the focus, on stigma, is familiar to me. The object is to reflect on ways in which the concept has salience for our grasp of mental illness. It is written in the wake of Ed… Read More »