JOAO BIEHL VITA PDF

One can quibble with what the book does less persuasively. Had to walk away from this book in amazement many times, either to cry or to talk about it with the person nearest me. Dec 07, Bella Pascal Zionts rated it it was amazing. To ask other readers questions about Vitaplease sign up. By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

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Biehl refers to such [End Page ] places as "zones of social abandonment" 2 , that is, places that lack medical and governmental attention and are ultimately treated as "dump" sites for the ill, the impoverished, the mentally challenged, the jobless, and the homeless. Considering Vita "the end-station on the road of poverty; […] where living beings go when they are no longer considered people" 2 , he examines life in Vita as a death catalyst for its occupants due to the ill-equipped staff, medical misdiagnoses, lack of funds and inadequate infrastructure.

Each part is broken down into a number of entitled sections and accompanied by several photos of Vita and its occupants and of Catarina and her immediate family. Part I of this study, "Vita," gives a brief background on the "deinstitutionalization" of the mentally ill in the nineties in Porto Alegre, thus shifting "the burden of care from state institutions to the family and communities" As Biehl demonstrates, this nationwide phenomenon intensified the emergence of socially marginalized and decaying areas such as Vita.

In addition, Part I deals with both the background and mental conditions of the occupants and the staff at Vita, addressing the infrastructural and medical AIDS and tuberculosis difficulties they endure on a daily basis. In Part II, "Catarina and the Alphabet," Biehl relates his initial encounters with Catarina and his discovery of the lists of words and phrases she compiles in spite of her progressive paralysis and dependence on her wheelchair.

Biehl then relates his conversations with Catarina about the writing of her "dictionary" in order to retrace her alleged mental illness and the rejection she experiences from her family, friends, medical institutions, and society as a whole. One can quibble with what the book does less persuasively.

It would be interesting to know if Catarina herself took any part in the selection of these portions. However, these criticisms aside, VITA: Life in a Zone of Social Abandonment is a well-researched study with a fine balance between theoretical discussions and thorough fieldwork, offering a complex and original insight into the dynamics of social abandonment in contemporary Brazil.

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Joao Biehl

University of California — Berkeley. Very frustrating to read What bifhl hell, Joao? Apr 25, Jerry rated it it was amazing Shelves: Had to walk away from this book in amazement many times, either to cry or to talk about it with the person nearest me. His point is not always entirely clear. An ethnography of one person.

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João Biehl

Biehl refers to such [End Page ] places as "zones of social abandonment" 2 , that is, places that lack medical and governmental attention and are ultimately treated as "dump" sites for the ill, the impoverished, the mentally challenged, the jobless, and the homeless. Considering Vita "the end-station on the road of poverty; […] where living beings go when they are no longer considered people" 2 , he examines life in Vita as a death catalyst for its occupants due to the ill-equipped staff, medical misdiagnoses, lack of funds and inadequate infrastructure. Each part is broken down into a number of entitled sections and accompanied by several photos of Vita and its occupants and of Catarina and her immediate family. Part I of this study, "Vita," gives a brief background on the "deinstitutionalization" of the mentally ill in the nineties in Porto Alegre, thus shifting "the burden of care from state institutions to the family and communities" As Biehl demonstrates, this nationwide phenomenon intensified the emergence of socially marginalized and decaying areas such as Vita. In addition, Part I deals with both the background and mental conditions of the occupants and the staff at Vita, addressing the infrastructural and medical AIDS and tuberculosis difficulties they endure on a daily basis.

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