Prof. Lindsey Richardson’s new course explores the sociological impacts of health and illness



UBC Sociology is excited to announce Prof. Lindsey Richardson’s new course for the upcoming Winter 2022/2023 term, SOCI 495F 201 Sociology and Health.

This class will provide a broad overview of the sociological understanding of health and illness, observing its interdisciplinary contributions and providing background on key issues and debates relevant in Canadian and international contexts. Students will engage with empirical research and popular media reporting surrounding three overlapping themes:

Prof. Lindsey Richardson

Social Identity, Social Position, and Life Chances

Why do some groups have better health than other groups? This segment of the course will describe and examine how socio-demographic characteristics (e.g., gender, ethnicity, class, etc.) combine with forces at the micro-and macro-level to create differences in health and well-being.

Social Understandings and Interactions

How do the dynamics of social relationships and social forces shape how we understand and experience “health” and “illness”? We will consider how different actors construct and define norms around illness, how norms are challenged and influenced, and how social organization and social contexts are related to health.

Organizational and Institutional Dimensions of Health

How do social structures and institutions affect health? Why are these important? We will look within and beyond health care systems examine how different tools for social organization and categorization, economic accumulation, and moral questioning impact health, and critically examine how different advances relevant to health play out as they interact with different aspects of social architecture.

Students who wish to take SOCI 495F 201 will need to have completed a first-year Sociology course to enroll.