Greenhalgh, Susan 1949-
Greenhalgh, Susan 1949-
Academic and anthropologist. Population Council, New York, NY, Center for Policy Studies, Berelson fellow, 1983-84, staff associate, 1984-86, associate, 1987-89, Research Division senior associate, 1990-94; University of California, Irvine, associate professor, 1994-2001, professor of anthropology, 2001—. Foreign Language and Area Studies fellow, 1977-78; University of California, Berkeley, Chinese Studies Center postdoctoral fellow, 1982-83; Columbia University, East Asian Institute visiting scholar, 1989-1990; Princeton University, Princeton, NJ, visiting instructor, 1993, 1994; University of California, Washington, DC Program, faculty-in-residence, 2005-06; John T. and Catherine D. MacArthur Foundation, Chicago, IL, distinguished visitor; Open Society Institute, individual project fellow.
American Anthropological Association (steering committee member of the Interest Group on the Anthropology of Public Policy), American Ethnological Society, Association for Feminist Anthropology, Society for Cultural Anthropology, Society for Medical Anthropology, Council for Anthropology and Reproduction, Association for Asian Studies, International Union for the Scientific Study of Population, Population Association of America, Phi Beta Kappa.
Recipient of numerous research grants, including from the National Science Foundation and the National Institutes of Health; Clifford C. Clogg award, Population Association of America, 2002, for outstanding career achievement.
Sexual Stratification: The Other Side of ‘Growth with Equity’ in East Asia, Population Council (New York, NY), 1985.
(With John Bongaarts) An Alternative to the One-Child Policy in China, Population Council (New York, NY), 1985.
(With John Bongaarts) Fertility Policy in China: Future Options, Population Council (New York, NY), 1986.
Land Reform and Family Entrepreneurialism in East Asia, Population Council (New York, NY), 1987.
Fertility as Mobility: Sinic Transitions, Population Council (New York, NY), 1988.
Population Research in China: An Introduction and Guide to Institutes, Population Council (New York, NY), 1988.
(With Edwin A. Winckler) Contending Approaches to the Political Economy of Taiwan, M.E. Sharpe (Armonk, NY), 1988.
Fertility Trends in China: Approaching the 1990s, Population Council (New York, NY), 1989.
The Social Dynamics of Child Mortality in Village Shaanxi, Population Council (New York, NY), 1994.
Anthropological Contributions to Fertility Theory, Population Council (New York, NY), 1994.
(Editor) Situating Fertility: Anthropology and Demographic Inquiry, Cambridge University Press (New York, NY), 1995.
Under the Medical Gaze: Facts and Fictions of Chronic Pain, University of California Press (Berkeley, CA), 2001.
(With Edwin A. Winckler) Governing China's Population: From Leninist to Neoliberal Biopolitics, Stanford University Press (Stanford, CA), 2005.
Just One Child: Science and Policy in Deng's China, University of California Press (Berkeley, CA), 2008.
Contributing editor of the section for the Interest Group on the Anthropology of Public Policy of the American Anthropological Association Newsletter. Contributor to numerous periodicals and journals, including Population and Development Review, American Ethnologist, Journal of Women in Culture and Society, Comparative Studies in Society and History, Australian Journal of Chinese Affairs, Chinese Population Science, Science, and China Quarterly.
Member of editorial board for numerous publications, including Annual reviews of Anthropology, Population and Environment, and Population and Development Review. Member of the International Board of Associate Editors for the series "New Perspectives in Anthropological and Social Demography," Cambridge University Press, 1996—.
Susan Greenhalgh is an academic and anthropologist. Completing her graduate degrees at Columbia University in New York City, Greenhalgh entered a career in research and later academia, working in the fields of anthropology, demography, and feminist studies. She conducted extensive research for the Population Council in the 1980s and early 1990s before taking up a professorship at the University of California, Irvine, in 1994. Greenhalgh has written or edited a number of books in her field and contributes to a number of academic journals.
In 1995 Greenhalgh edited Situating Fertility: Anthropology and Demographic Inquiry. The book approaches the topic of fertility from an anthropologic and demographic perspective in an attempt to combine the two fields and present a study that is thorough and benefits from what each approach has to offer. Susan Cotts Watkins, writing in the Journal of Interdisciplinary History, remarked that "anthropologists interested in diversity and cultural specificity should applaud this demonstration of autonomy and resistance to anthropological hegemony." Alan Swedlund, writing in the Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute, stated: "This is not a source book for mathematical methodologies for anthropological settings, … nor is it a source for a general theory of fertility dynamics." Swedlund clarified that "this does not mean that important generalizations are not possible, or that conventional methods are not desirable, but what these chapters do for me is to challenge the idea that a recipe book of methods or a grand theory is what we need, or what the phenomena of fertility are capable of providing." Commenting on the fusion of anthropology and demographics, Constance A. Nathanson remarked in a Population and Development Review article that "this is a new development and requires nurturing. It gives ground for hope, however, that the next book that follows the path opened up by this important work will include essays by demographers steeped in anthropology as well as by anthropologists steeped in demography."
Greenhalgh published Under the Medical Gaze: Facts and Fictions of Chronic Pain in 2001. The book serves as an autoethnography, in which she analyzes the notes she took as a patient interacting with male and female doctors in uncovering a mystery illness she suffered from. A contributor to Publishers Weekly commented that the book "raises provocative and controversial issues." Library Journal contributor Ximena Chrisagis thought that Greenhalgh "convincingly" writes about her subject. Chrisagis noted that Greenhalgh "uses jargon sparingly" in order to appeal to a wider readership, but worried that "the ethnographic style might limit its appeal for those outside academia." Lara Winner, reviewing the book on the Riverwood Center Web site, noted the one "major weakness of the book is its source material; Greenhalgh writes almost exclusively from her own experience, supplemented by her diaries and medical journals (kept at the time for the purpose of improving her health and later turned into ethnographic source materials)." Winner noted that "while the book has flaws, it also contains some good analysis." Winner continued, saying that "for those interested in a detailed case study on the phenomenology of chronic illness and/or pain, the theoretical constraints that make it difficult for the biomedical model to serve chronically ill patients, the power imbalances inherent in the doctor-patient relationship, or the methods by which ‘symptoms’ become ‘syndromes’ or ‘diseases,’ Under the Medical Gaze would be worthwhile."
In 2005 Greenhalgh published Governing China's Population: From Leninist to Neoliberal Biopolitics with Edwin A. Winckler. The book looks at the one-child policy China adopted to obtain higher GDPs and quality of lives for its citizens. The pair provide demographic details, including dependency ratios, fertility rates, and prevalence of contraceptive use. The opening half of the book discusses the formation of the policy and how it has evolved over the years, from Mao through Hu. The book also looks at the policy results from the citizens' perspectives. In the second half, the authors cover the successes and failures of the policies from the village level.
Malcolm Thompson, reviewing the book in Pacific Affairs, called the book "important," noting the authors' "unmatched access to sources and extensive fieldwork experience." Thompson was somewhat surprised by Greenhalgh and Winckler's conclusion as to the benefits of China's one-child policy in falling in line with Western norms. He noted that "the argument is convincing, but the authors clearly view this convergence as wholly salutary: as a process of perfecting biopolitics according to neoliberal criteria." Thompson commented: "This book will be of interest to population specialists, analysts of the PRC, and anyone interested in how modern states and societies problematize and govern themselves." Chen Jianyue, writing in the China Review International, commented that "a number of improvements could be made to this book. A little more thorough editing could have prevented a tendency toward repetition in the narrative text." Jianyue stated: "Questionable is Greenhalgh and Winckler's explanation of why most young Chinese parents do their best to raise their children to be successful." Jianyue also noted that "students of Communism will find that Greenhalgh and Winckler's different interpretations of Leninism, Stalinism, Maoism, Dengism, and Hu's neoliberalism fail to point out the real authoritarian nature of Communism and its institutions. Further confusing matters is the authors' identification of Deng's reformism as an ‘adaptive’ Leninism." Jianyue concluded that "this is an important, yet contentious book. The authors' interdisciplinary approach widens our perspective on the subject. But it may be a bit difficult for general readers, with its scholarly jargon and unfamiliar theories, and for scholars of modern China it offers a one-sided, if not misleading, story of how the Communist regime has governed China's growing population while trying to turn China into an economic superpower."
In a Studies in Family Planning review, Nancy E. Riley claimed that Winckler and Greenhalgh "are well situated for this undertaking. They have extraordinary knowledge of China and its politics, accumulated through years of studying China's birth planning programs and talking with those involved in implementing these programs." Like Thompson above, Riley felt that "this is an important book." Riley concluded that "Greenhalgh and Winckler tell a fascinating story about the past and present extent of the influence of China's population policies. They contribute to our understanding of the processes and outcomes of policymaking in China over the past fifty years. Through the perspectives they bring to this examination, they also enrich and extend demographic knowledge. This is a dense book packed with informa- tion. The details of the first half of the book and the theoretical reach of the second require work on the part of the reader, but the effort is worthwhile. The authors make a compelling argument for examining population issues and policy in any place or time using theories and perspectives that are new to demography."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Greenhalgh, Susan, Under the Medical Gaze: Facts and Fictions of Chronic Pain, University of California Press (Berkeley, CA), 2001.
Books & Culture, May 1, 2007, Ross Douthat, review of Governing China's Population: From Leninist to Neoliberal Biopolitics, p. 28.
China Quarterly, December, 1990, Yun-Han Chu, review of Contending Approaches to the Political Economy of Taiwan, p. 738.
China Review International, spring, 2006, Chen Jianyue, review of Governing China's Population.
Choice: Current Reviews for Academic Libraries, May, 2006, G.A. McBeath, review of Governing China's Population, p. 1672.
Comparative Economic Studies, spring, 1991, Robert C. Hsu, review of Contending Approaches to the Political Economy of Taiwan.
Contemporary Sociology, January, 1990, Gary G. Hamilton, review of Contending Approaches to the Political Economy of Taiwan, p. 33; July, 2002, Patricia Kelley, review of Under the Medical Gaze, p. 485; March, 2007, M. Giovanna Merli, review of Governing China's Population, p. 164.
Journal of Asian Studies, May, 1990, J. Bruce Jacobs, review of Contending Approaches to the Political Economy of Taiwan, p. 387.
Journal of Contemporary Asia, January, 1991, Alexander Irwan, review of Contending Approaches to the Political Economy of Taiwan, p. 116.
Journal of Developing Areas, January, 1990, Walter Arnold, review of Contending Approaches to the Political Economy of Taiwan, p. 252.
Journal of Economic Literature, December, 1989, review of Contending Approaches to the Political Economy of Taiwan, p. 1739.
Journal of Health Politics, Policy and Law, December, 2002, Kathy Charmaz, review of Under the Medical Gaze, p. 1040.
Journal of Interdisciplinary History, summer, 1997, Susan Cotts Watkins, review of Situating Fertility: Anthropology and Demographic Inquiry.
Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute, March, 1997, Alan Swedlund, review of Situating Fertility, p. 177.
Library Journal, July, 2001, Ximena Chrisagis, review of Under the Medical Gaze, p. 114.
Pacific Affairs, winter, 1989, review of Contending Approaches to the Political Economy of Taiwan; spring, 2006, Malcolm Thompson, review of Governing China's Population.
Population and Development Review, March, 1997, Constance A. Nathanson, review of Situating Fertility, p. 184.
Population Studies, July, 1997, John C. Caldwell, review of Situating Fertility, p. 231.
Publishers Weekly, April 30, 2001, review of Under the Medical Gaze, p. 69.
Reference & Research Book News, February, 2006, review of Governing China's Population.
Studies in Family Planning, December, 2006, Nancy E. Riley, review of Governing China's Population, p. 305.
Riverwood Center Web site,http://www.riverwoodcenter.org/ (January 25, 2008), Lara Winner, review of Under the Medical Gaze.
University of California, Irvine, Department of Anthropology Web site,http://www.anthro.uci.edu/ (January 25, 2008), author profile.