Health and Well-Being Among the Jats of Western Uttar Pradesh: An Anthropological Life Cycle Approach

Health and Well-Being Among the Jats of Western Uttar Pradesh: An Anthropological Life Cycle Approach

Dhananjay Kumar (Centre for Culture and Development, Vadodara, India)
Copyright: © 2020 |Pages: 25
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-1185-5.ch007

Abstract

The chapter interrogates the explicit and implicit perception of health and well-being among the Jats of Western Uttar Pradesh by using anthropological life cycle approach. The research combined village ethnography and empirical field work to discuss their behavioural choices that they make to maintain good spiritual, mental and physical well-being. For the purpose of the study, both primary and secondary data have been used. Taking a village as a unit is a generally accepted way of the doing research in the social anthropology, and the author has used this approach to gain the overview of health, well-being, wellness, and belief pattern as perceived by the villagers.
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Conceptual Framework

The chapter examines the health, well-being and belief perception among the Jats from the life- cycle approach. Obviously time is important component in any society. Every culture defines time in its own way. Medical anthropology and life cycle approach used to provide the analytic framework of the study. Attempts have been made to understand the relations, linkages, and patterns between the health and well-being in Jats and their life-stages. How they perceive health and wellbeing at the different stages of life-cycle. It was observed that concept of tradition and modern health system are inadequate to deal with the Jats’ perception of health and well-being. Although medical anthropologist study the health concepts, but health and well-being from life cycle approach a novel study in more contemporary literature. It tries to answer a few questions, such as what is health and well-being, how culture is related to it, how culture perceive this, what are the main medical anthropological approach relevant to study this perceptions and how relevant the anthropological informed life-cycle approach is relevant to document this perception.

Key Terms in this Chapter

Medical Anthropology: A subfield of Anthropology that draws upon social, cultural, biological, and linguistic anthropology to better understand those factors which influence health and well-being.

Health: A state of complete physical, mental, and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.

Village Ethnography: A branch of ethnography that focus on the systematic study of people and culture of the village.

Thick Description: It is a term used to characterize the process of paying attention to contextual detail in observing and interpreting social meaning when conducting qualitative research

Life-Cycle: The life cycles refers to maturational and generational processes in natural population. In human being, it starts from conception and ends with death through travelling from different stages (e.g., infancy, childhood, adolescence, and adulthood).

Wellness: The state of being in good health, especially as an actively pursued goal. Wellness is an active process of becoming aware of and making choices toward a healthy and fulfilling life.

Village Studies: The studies focus on village and its people. It may done through different perspective. Started by seminal works of famous anthropologist, M. N. Srinivas. The 1950s and late 1960s witnessed the publication of a large number of village studies by Indian and other anthropologists; more village studies have been made by anthropologists in India.

Well-Being: Well-being is the experience of health, happiness, and prosperity. It includes having good mental health, high life satisfaction, and a sense of meaning or purpose. More generally, well-being is just feeling well.

Jats: Traditional agriculturalist people residing western part of India.

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