Title

How Do We Explain the Social, Political, and Economic Determinants of Health? A Call for the Inclusion of Social Theories of Health Inequality Within U.S.-Based Public Health Pedagogy

Publication Date

12-1-2020

Document Type

Article

Department

Public Health and Recreation

Publication Title

Pedagogy in Health Promotion

Volume

6

Issue

4

DOI

10.1177/2373379920937719

First Page

246

Last Page

252

Abstract

New public health educational competencies include the ability to explain social phenomena—such as politics, globalization, and racism—and their relationship to health and disease. Formal explanations of social phenomena call for social theory. However, public health pedagogy is principally concerned with behavioral theory. This piece surveys the behavioral theoretical status quo within public health pedagogy and discusses its implication. The concept of “social theories of health inequality”—that is, explanations of health-relevant social phenomena and their role in producing differences in health, morbidity, and mortality—is proposed as one way of fulfilling new educational competencies. Emerging social theories of health inequality are identified and discussed in relation to public health pedagogy.

Keywords

CEPH, public health pedagogy, social determinants of health

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