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Chronic Conditions,

Fluid States:

Chronicity and
the Anthropology
of Illness

Edited by

Lenore Manderson &
Carolyn Smith-Morris


Chronic Conditions, Fluid States explores the uneven impact of chronic illness and disability on individuals, families, and communities in diverse local and global settings. To date, much of the social as well as biomedical research has treated the experience of illness and the challenges of disease control and management as segmented and episodic. Breaking new ground in medical anthropology by challenging the chronic/acute divide in illness and disease, the editors, along with a group of rising scholars and some of the most influential minds in the field, address the concept of chronicity, an idea used to explain individual and local life-worlds, question public health discourse, and consider the relationship between health and the globalizing forces that shape it.


“A major collection of essays from leaders in the field of medical anthropology, Chronic Conditions, Fluid States pays much-needed attention to one of the greatest challenges currently faced by both the wealthiest and poorest of nations. For anyone wishing to think critically about chronic illness in cross-cultural perspective, the social forces shaping this issue, and its impact on the lived experiences of people worldwide, there is no better place to start than this pioneering volume.”

–Richard Parker, Columbia University, Editor-in-Chief, Global Public Health


LENORE MANDERSON is a research professor with appointments in the faculties of medicine, nursing and health sciences, and arts at Monash University, Australia. Her books include Global Health Policy, Local Realities and Rethinking Wellbeing.

CAROLYN SMITH-MORRIS is an associate professor in the department of anthropology at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas. She is the author of Diabetes among the Pima: Stories of Survival.


Lenore Manderson,
Marcia Inhorn,
Carolyn Smith-Morris,
Dennis Wiedman,
Byron Good,
Carla Manchira,
Nida Hasanat,
Muhana Utami,
Daphna Birenbaum-Carmeli,
Kylea Liese,
Steve Ferzacca,
Carl Kendall,
Zelee Hill,
Ron Maynard,
Elisa Sobo,
Gelya Frank,
Carolyn Baum,
& Mary Law.