Claire Edwards
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Eluska Fernández
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Analysing health and health policy
Introducing the governmentality turn
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This chapter establishes some of the conceptual cornerstones associated with governmentality thinking and considers their implications for an analysis of health and health policy in Ireland. It begins by laying out Michel Foucault and others' understandings of governmentality, and follows this by exploring how governmentality literature has been deployed within studies of health and health policy analysis. The chapter provides a context to some of the specificities and contingencies of Irish health policy debates. It also presents some key concepts discussed in this book. The book focuses on the way in which different health issues, through sources including policy documents, television health promotion campaigns and documents from professional bodies, have sought to 'bring into being' particular health problems and construct particular health behaviours as problematic. It deals with the issues of obesity and childhood, albeit in very different ways.

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