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Inequalities, the arts and public health: Towards an international conversation

Parkinson, C and White, M (2013) Inequalities, the arts and public health: Towards an international conversation. Arts and Health, 5 (3). pp. 177-189. ISSN 1753-3015

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Abstract

This paper considers how participatory arts informed by thinking in public health can play a significant part internationally in addressing inequalities in health. It looks beyond national overviews of arts and health to consider what would make for meaningful international practice, citing recent initiatives of national networks in English-speaking countries and examples of influential developments in South America and the European Union. In the context of public health thinking on inequalities and social justice, the paper posits what would make for good practice and appropriate research that impacts on policy. As the arts and health movement gathers momentum, the paper urges the arts to describe their potency in the policy-making arena in the most compelling ways to articulate their social, economic and cultural values. In the process, it identifies the reflexive consideration of participatory practice - involving people routinely marginalised from decision-making processes - as a possible avenue into this work.

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