Video Links

This section of the site offers video links relevant to each chapter. These videos have been carefully selected by the author, and include a short commentary detailing what makes it relevant.

Please click on the chapter headings below to expand the video clips and commentaries:

Chapter 1- Biomedicine

Psycho-social factors in ME, CFS and Fibromyalgia

Length: 6:11 minutes.

Author commentary: In short this clip, Alex Howard and Thora Blondal from the Optimum Health Clinic talk about psycho-social factors as they relate to ME, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and Fibromyalgia. These diseases are increasingly common in society, but as Thora suggests, there is also growing recognition of the importance of psycho-social factors in relation to illness in general. However, this approach is controversial. For many years, CFS/ME was not recognised as a genuine illness which has multiple physiological causes and debilitating symptoms. Seeing CFS/ME and a biopsychosocial problem can be mistakenly interpreted as meaning that CRS/ME is ‘all in the mind’ and that resources should be devoted to only to counselling or perhaps to efforts to return (force?) sufferers back into employment rather than to medical research to establish physiological factors involved in the disease. After watching the clip, what do you see are the implications of a biopsychosocial response for approaches to treatment?

Chapter 2- Power


Length: 1:41 minutes.

Description: This brief clip is a satirical advertisement for the pseudo-drug ‘Havidol’. It was created by artist Justine Cooper to highlight the relationship between human distress and the creation and marketing of new drugs. It is an excellent example of the concept of medicalization. As argued in Chapter Two, there are a growing number of social issues which are now seen as medical issues, including misbehaviour in children, problematic drinking, obesity, sadness. It has even been suggested that personality issues such as shyness ultimately have a physiological basis and therefore lend themselves to a biochemical (pharmaceutical) cure. Watch the clip a couple of times. What message is the artist trying to get across about this process by which problems become ‘diseases’?

Orgasm Inc

Description: This clip is a trailer for the documentary Orgasm Inc, which is the subject of the case study in this chapter. Like the ‘Havidol’ advertisement, it implies that female sexual dysfunction has been medicalized. It raises interesting questions, some of which will be explored again in Chapter Seven on Sexuality. When and how is sex a health issue? 

Chapter 3- Class

Health inequalities and the Glasgow Effect

Length: 7:41 minutes.

Description: Professor Danny Dorling explores some of the factors behind differences in life expectancy in different parts of Glasgow. The factors he identifies echo some of the issues that are highlighted in Chapter Three. The clip demonstrates that health is not just about individual genetics and lifestyle, that health patterns also reflect the wider social circumstances in which individual people live their lives. Are any of the factors Danny identifies relevant for understanding health patterns in your area? Which factors are not relevant where you live?

Socio-economic inequalities in mortality in England and Wales

Length: 6:12 minutes.

Description: This is a clip provided by the Office of National Statistics, which explores the relationship between occupation and mortality in England and Wales in 2001-2008. It uses the NE-SEC classification scale, which is introduced in Chapter Three as a way of measuring social class. The clip also explores the impact of gender. The clip will help you to think about the issues raised in the chapter about how social class impacts on health patterns. Having watched the clip, how would you summarise what it is saying about the relationship between what people do for a living and death rates?

Richard Wilkinson: How Economic Inequality Divides Societies

Length: 16:55 minutes.

Description: Richard Wilkinson here presents his findings about the implications of global social inequality. Chapter Three suggests that poverty is bad for human health. Wilkinson, however, is arguing that it is not just poverty that is a problem, but inequality itself, which results in worse health in society overall through the mechanism of psycho-social factors. Watch the clip and then summarise his argument.

Make Health Fair

Length: 2:02 minutes.

Description: This short clip produced by the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine highlights the relationship between social inequality and ill health. What are the implications of thinking about health in this way?

Chapter 4- Ethnicity

Social Care TV (Social Care Institute for Excellence): The mental health and wellbeing of elders in black and minority ethnic communities: the impact of poor housing on mental wellbeing.

Length: 9:59 minutes.

Description: This clip explores housing challenges and the implications for mental health and wellbeing for older minority ethnic people in Bristol. In particular, it focuses on how Bristol Care and Repair worked with Mrs Robotham to help her with problems on her house that were causing her distress. It shows how employees of Bristol Care and Repair are trained to learn more about minority ethnic cultures so they can form constructive relationships with minority ethnic service users in the local area. At the end of the clip, Mrs Robotham talks about the value of this particular kind of service to her. This clip also relates to themes discussed in Chapter Five: Ageing and Chapter Nine: Mental Health. The clip highlights that health challenges for minority ethnic people are both similar and different to the challenges faced by everyone. In what ways are Mrs Robotham’s problems tied up with her ethnicity? In what ways are they not about ethnicity?

Cultural Competence for Healthcare Providers.

Length: 9: 27 minutes.

Description: This clip was made in the US by the Jefferson Center for Interprofessional Education. ‘Cultural competence’ is increasingly a requirement for health and social care professionals. It has been suggested that the idea of cultural competence can result, paradoxically, in some groups of people being treated as if they were all the same, when actually, there are differences between them. Watch the clip. What do you understand ‘cultural competence’ to mean? Having read the chapter, what do you think health and social professionals need to do to provide appropriate treatment for all people, regardless of ethnicity?

Ethnicity in England and Wales (Office for National Statistics)

Description:This clip summarises data from the 2011 UK census about the number of people from different ethnicities who live in the UK. Are the statistics a surprise to you? In what way?

Chapter 5- Ageing

World Health Organization: Healthy Ageing – Adding Life to Years.

Length: 1:20 minutes.

Description:This short clip challenges a number of stereotypes held about older people which connect to points made in Chapter Five. Ageing is not just a physiological issue but occurs in a social context. The quality of a person’s life and health is not determined only by genetics but by the experiences of a lifetime, as well as by the way that older people are treated in the society they live in. Having watched the clip, and based on your reading of the chapter, what are some of the ways we can ‘add life to years’ in the UK?

Exploring the Last Lap – Living and Dying (Dorothy Runnicles)

Length: 13:22 minutes.

Description: Dorothy Runnicles, is an Expert by Experience working with the UK Care Quality Commission and advisor to the Joseph Rowntree Foundation, talks to an audience in Glasgow about the challenges facing older people, including ageism in the UK. In what ways is she challenging ‘common sense’ ideas about old age?

(Note: Dorothy’s talk was a TEDx event. TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to listen to short talks. You may find other interesting talks on their website:

Chapter 6- Gender

Fotoshop by Adobé

Length: 2:14 minutes.
Description: US. Jesse Rosten’s satirical clip, made in the United States, like the Havidol clip for Chapter Two, is a satire about the advertising industry. It highlights the unrealistic standards of beauty demanded of women in our society. It also makes interesting references to the ways that the ‘beauty industry’ reinforces normative attitudes towards ageing and ethnicity. These are some of the ways that our society constructs what it means to be a woman. In what ways are social expectations for women to be young and beautiful bad for women’s health?

(Note: If you enjoy this clip, you can read more about it from Lester Andrist, who submitted it to The Sociological Cinema, an excellent online resource for students of sociology.)

National Life Expectancy, August 2012

Description: This clip, produced by the UK Office of National Statistics, uses graphs and tables to show the differences between life expectancy for men and women but also compares this with healthy and disability-free life expectancy. This reinforces that arguments made in Chapter Six. Having watched the clip, what are the differences between men and women? What changes are happening which are the same for both men and women?

Sociology of Youth: Gender and Sexuality

Length: 6:05 minutes.

Description: This entertaining US clip explores some of the ways in which femininity and masculinity are socially constructed, including the role of the media. It is also relevant to Chapter 7: Sexuality, as it explores the relationship between gender stereotypes and discrimination against LGBT people. 

Men’s health

Description: In this short clip for the CIHR Institute of Gender and Health in Canada, John Oliffe (Associate Professor in the School of Nursing at the University of British Columbia) discusses men’s health issues and the importance of the social construction of gender. Men’s health is very much influenced by social construction, as is women’s health. What advice does Oliffe give for health care professionals?

Chapter 7- Sexuality

Social Care TV (Social Care Institute for Excellence): Working with lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered people – people with mental health needs: Alison’s story

Length: 7:12 minutes.

Description: This clip talks about the mental health needs of LGBT people. Alison from Brighton talks about her physical and mental health needs and how they relate to prejudice or lack of understanding about lesbians. What are the implications of the issues raised in this clip for health care professionals?

(note: if you enjoyed this clip and the clip about Bristol Care and Repair, you can find more of these from Social Care TV at

More clips on sexuality can be viewed at The Sociological Cinema.

Chapter 8- Chronic illness and disability


Length: 10:47 minutes (watch part 1 and 2 – part 2 is linked on the right-hand side of YouTube).

Description: This clever clip was produced by the now defunct UK Disability Rights Commission. It challenges our sociological imagination, asking us to consider what life might be like if able-bodied people were in the minority in society. This supports the argument in Chapter Eight that the problems of chronically ill and disabled people are not just ‘bodily’ problems but caused by a society which discriminates against chronically ill and disabled people. What does the clip suggest about the way that our society marginalizes disabled people?

Eugenics – DNA Interactive ‘Chronicle’

Description: This US site offers for small modules which you can use to learn more about the eugenic  movement which is discussed in several chapters of the book and especially in Chapter Eight. The modules are entitled ‘Threat of the Unfit’, ‘Trial of Carrie Buck’, ‘In the Third Reich’ and ‘Living with Eugenics’.

Chapter 9- Mental health

Does mental illness exist?

Length: 22:22 minutes.

Description: Dr Thomas Szasz, a founder of the 'anti-psychiatry' movement, gives an overview of his ideas at the Centre of Excellence in Interdisciplinary Mental Health at the University of Birmingham. Dr Szasz is very critical of the role of psychiatrists. What do you think about his ideas?

The Toxic Stress of Early Childhood.

Length: 5:44 minutes.

Description: Speakers at the Harvard School of Public Health. Scientists are increasingly conscious of the negative health impacts of adversity in early childhood on health throughout the lifecourse. These speeches support the argument in Chapter Nine that mental health reflects social factors. In what ways can stress in early childhood prove toxic?

Chapter 10- Health care

What if Our Healthcare System Kept Us Healthy?

Length: 16:34 minutes.

Description: Rebecca Onie is the founder of Health Leads, an American program that connects patients to basic care and resources, such as food and housing, that are the root cause of many health problems. In this clip she talks about how she came to found this organization. How is health in your country governed by factors beyond ‘the four walls of the doctor’s office’? What do you think are the implications of these ideas for the health care system in your country?

Stafford Hospital report

Length: 02:55 minutes.

Description: In this 2013 BBC News clip, Robert Francis presents the recommendations of a public inquiry into failings at Stafford Hospital. A ‘common sense’ explanation of the deaths at Stafford would emphasise the acts and decisions of staff on the ground. A sociological approach attempts to situate individual decisions in a wider social context. What does Robert Francis argue lay behind the poor care revealed at Stafford Hospital? How might episodes like this be avoided? 

Unpaid care in England and Wales (ONS clip)

Description: As mentioned in Chapter Ten, very many people rely on unpaid care. This clip examines data from the 2011 UK census and explores the extent of unpaid care and what kind of people are involved.

Interprofessional Practice – a series of clips from countries around the world

As mentioned in Chapter Ten, training health and social care students to work in interprofessional teams is an increasingly prominent focus on higher education in health and social care. The following clips outline what is involved in interprofessional practice and why it matters. You can browse the clips to learn more.

University of Leicester – Inter-Professional Team Work

Length: 18:24 minutes.

Description:This clip introduces a programme used to train all health and social care professionals in the University of Leicester’s local region. Its focus on helping trainees to work alongside one another in multidisciplinary teams in different environments. The video visits Leicester Royal Infirmary, Northampton General Hospital, Prince Philip House, Mistrys Pharmacy in Market Harborough and Beaumont Leys and Stocking Farm Sure Start, to look at examples of effective inter-professional working. It was produced by University of Leicester ITS Multimedia Services and is a joint initiative between The University of Northampton, De Montfort University, the NHS Leicestershire, Northamptonshire and Rutland Workforce Development Confederation and the University of Leicester.

Stories from Interprofessional Practice

Length: 08:13 minutes.

Description: In this US clip made at the University of Arizona, practitioners from medicine, law, nursing and pharmacy share stories about interprofessional health care in practice.

UQ Interprofessional practice: harness the power of healthcare teams

Length: 09:47 minutes. This clip made at the University of Queensland and introduces how interprofessional learning is delivered there.

Waterloo Interprofessional Simulation 2010

Length: 15:00 minutes.

Description: This clip shows  students from firefighters, police, paramedics, respiratory therapy, medicine, practical nursing, registered nursing, social work as well as media studies working together n a simulation organized by the Waterloo Interprofessional Healthcare Student Collaborative (WIHSC).

Author: Lani Russell

Pub Date:December 2013

Pages: 224

Learn more about this book