‘Look Under the Sheets!’ Fighting with the Senses in Relation to Defecation and Bodily Care in Hospitals and Care Institutions

Article Summary by Sjaak van der Geest and Shahaduz Zaman

Studies of hospital care pay little attention to unpleasant experiences of nurses and patients with regard to dirt and defecation. Disgust and embarrassment about dirt complicate the work of nurses and the well-being of patients. In this article we focus on conditions of hospital care in Bangladesh, Ghana and The Netherlands.

Read the article online on the Medical Humanties journal website: https://mh.bmj.com/content/47/1/103


Portrait of Sjaak van der Geest

Sjaak van der Geest is emeritus professor of Medical Anthropology at the University of Amsterdam. He has done fieldwork in Ghana and Cameroon on a variety of subjects including sexual relationships and birth control, the use and distribution of medicines, dying, death and funeral, popular song texts, meanings of growing old, sleeping, concepts of dirt and defecation, and cultures of privacy.
Email: s.vandergeest@uva.nl
Website: www.sjaakvandergeest.nl



Portrait of Shahaduz ZamanDr. Shahaduz Zaman is a Reader at the Department of Global Health and Infection, University of Sussex. He has an interdisciplinary background with degrees in Medical Anthropology, Public Health and Medicine. Dr. Zaman’s research interests include socio-cultural aspects of communicable and non-communicable diseases, health policy and health systems in low income countries, death dying and end of life, refugee health, role of art in heath interventions, hospital ethnography, and medical history. He has coordinated interdisciplinary research projects in South Asia, Africa and Mediterranean countries.

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