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Global Reproductive Health, Culture and Politics – Challenges in transdisciplinary research
Welcome to a seminar about reproductive health with Birgitta Essén, Professor in International Maternal and Reproductive Health.
The seminar is organized by the Forum for medical humanities at Uppsala University and is open to all interested. The aim of the seminar is to promote interactions among researchers from all faculties with interests in issues relating to medicine and health.
Reproductive health is about how to best treat and prevent illness related to reproduction, childlessness, abortion, family planning, pregnancy, and motherhood. However, due to its influx of fundamental social values of humanity— in a globalized society— it has become one of the most politicalized topics within medicine and has many claims-makers. The very nature of academic scholarship is the critical investigation and the critical dialogue. The greatest threat to scholarship is therefore when such dialogues are closed down, censored, or compromised. Thus, during the seminar, I will give some examples of how I have managed to navigate as a researcher and gynaecologist in the field of Global ‘SRHR’ (sexual reproductive health and rights). I will also invite you to discuss general differences between research at the Faculty of Medicine compared to the Faculty of Social Sciences and Humanities.
Birgitta Essén is Professor in International Maternal and Reproductive Health at the Department of Women’s and Children’s Health/IMCH. She is a Senior Consultant in Obstetrics and Gynaecology at the University Hospital of Uppsala where she is running a clinic, especially for immigrant women. Since the last 20 years, she has had a research collaboration with a medical anthropologist where they have translated theoretical knowledge of anthropology–as social & cultural aspects of reproductive phenomena–and then made it applicable in health promotions or in maternity care.