Current dilemmas of Brazilian society through the lenses of anthropology: an experience report in a discipline from the UFRJ Collective Health Graduation Course
The Brazilian anthropology has focused on multiculturalism, social diversity and economic inequality in the country. Anthropological studies on these issues have greatly contributed to inserting it into broader debates about Brazilian social problems. This article deals with a report taken from two semesters teaching experience of the Integrated Activities of Collective Health II discipline for second period bachelor’s degree students of the graduate course in collective health of Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro. The discipline aims at discussing emerging social problems in Brazilian society such as racism, religious intolerance, health of the transsexual population and domestic violence. Through conversations with activists and meetings in militance sites, students engage in participant observation and know their struggles and demands. Introducing important concepts to anthropology, such as ethnocentrism, relativism and social movements, it is intended to stimulate a critical reflection on contemporary social dilemmas in the students. The debates, reports and experiences exchanges emerged during the discipline course reveal that anthropology has a lot to contribute to a more dialogical formation and action of these future public health workers among the population of whom they will take care, besides favoring a more applied understanding on the impact of the social inequalities on the health-disease process.
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