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Sarah Hodges

Professor Sarah Hodges

Professor of Global Health and Social Medicine

Research interests

  • Medicine
  • Sociology

Biography

Sarah currently runs the £1.5m Wellcome-funded Collaborative Award, ‘What’s at stake in the fake? Indian pharmaceuticals, African markets, and global health’ alongside co-investigators from the University of the Witwatersrand and the University of Amsterdam (2018-2024).

Rather than examining the pharmacological properties of pharmaceuticals, ‘What’s at stake in the fake?’ researchers track and trace worries about fake drugs. In studying the everyday lives of suspicion, project researchers ask questions about suspicion’s material effects and about who benefits from suspicions about fake drugs.

The ‘What’s at stake in the fake?’ team's research is based in India, Kenya, South Africa, Switzerland, Tanzania, and Zimbabwe.

Before joining King’s in 2022, Sarah held positions at the University of Warwick, Cambridge University, SOAS, and was a visiting professor at Jawaharlal Nehru University. She holds an MA and PhD from the University of Chicago and a BA from Brown University.

Research

Sarah uses ethnography and historical records to ask: what are the everyday lives of public health measures?

To answer this question, she moves beyond medical anthropologists’ and historians’ conventional sites of inquiry: the clinic, the lab, the classroom, or the regulator’s office. Instead, Sarah’s field sites have included dumpsters behind hospitals, pharmaceutical distributors’ warehouse parking lots, radical newspaper archives, and hotel lobbies.

Sarah has honed her approach through a series of major projects:

  • about the radical political life of women’s contraceptives in India under colonial rule
  • the economic afterlives of used, discarded medical plastics
  • the political economies of Indian pharmaceuticals at home and abroad.

In one way or another, all her research is empirically rooted in Tamil-speaking south India.

Teaching

Undergraduate

  •  The Politics of Life and Death (5SSHM010)

Further details

See Sarah's research profile

    Research

    CMP Logo-72dpi
    Culture, Medicine & Power research group

    Delving into the interdisciplinary study of social, cultural, political and historical dimensions of health and illness.

    Reproduction research cluster logo
    Reproduction Research Cluster

    Our interdisciplinary group examines the complex social, cultural, and political dimensions of reproduction.

    News

    Pandemic treaty pressure harmful to poorer countries, says expert

    Attempts by the WHO to push for an agreement in the Pandemic Treaty negotiations are detrimental to poorer countries, according to a leading global health...

    WHO

    Events

    20JunStudents in class

    CaféTheoria Workshop 8: The Field and the Fieldworker

    CaféTheoria is an interactive, hybrid workshop series where experts discuss core social science theories and students engage in lively debate.

    02Maypolitics of potential

    Book launch: The Politics of Potential

    The Politics of Potential examines how new scientific understandings of the developmental origins of health and disease constitute new forms of...

    Please note: this event has passed.

      Research

      CMP Logo-72dpi
      Culture, Medicine & Power research group

      Delving into the interdisciplinary study of social, cultural, political and historical dimensions of health and illness.

      Reproduction research cluster logo
      Reproduction Research Cluster

      Our interdisciplinary group examines the complex social, cultural, and political dimensions of reproduction.

      News

      Pandemic treaty pressure harmful to poorer countries, says expert

      Attempts by the WHO to push for an agreement in the Pandemic Treaty negotiations are detrimental to poorer countries, according to a leading global health...

      WHO

      Events

      20JunStudents in class

      CaféTheoria Workshop 8: The Field and the Fieldworker

      CaféTheoria is an interactive, hybrid workshop series where experts discuss core social science theories and students engage in lively debate.

      02Maypolitics of potential

      Book launch: The Politics of Potential

      The Politics of Potential examines how new scientific understandings of the developmental origins of health and disease constitute new forms of...

      Please note: this event has passed.