1st Edition

Understanding Public Health
Productive Processing of Internal and External Reality

ISBN 9780367360764
Published December 19, 2019 by Routledge
110 Pages

USD $44.95

Prices & shipping based on shipping country


Book Description

This book develops a new model of the genesis of health, on the basis of the interplay between genetic and environmental factors. Hurrelmann and Richter build upon the basic theories of health and the popular model of salutogenesis to offer a comprehensive interdisciplinary theory of health genesis and success: Productive Processing of Reality (PPR).

The authors show that health is the lifelong dynamic process of dealing with the internal reality of physical and psychological impulses and the external reality of social and material impulses. To demonstrate this, the book is split into three interconnected parts. Part A analyses the determinants of health, providing an overview of the insights of current research and the impact of socioeconomic influences and gender on health. Part B covers public health, social, learning and coping theories, all of which understand health as an interaction between people and their environment. Part C draws on these four theories to outline PPR, stressing the interrelation between physical and mental constitution and the demands of the social and mental environment, and suggesting strategies for coping with these demands during the life course.

Understanding Public Health: Productive Processing of Internal and External Reality will be valuable reading for students and researchers in psychology, sociology, educational science, public health and medical science, and for policymakers in public health.

Table of Contents

Introduction Part A The Determinants of Health 1. Influential factors of health 2. The influence of social circumstances 2.1 The importance of the family 2.2 The impact of education, work and career 3. The influence of gender and life course 3.1 Health impairments in boys and girls 3.2 Health impairments at later stages of the life course Part B The Elements of Health 4. Social theories of health 4.1 The impact of unequal social and economic resources 4.2 Morbid social and organisational structures 5. Public health theories 5.1 Identification of the causes for the spread of diseases 5.2 Identification of optimal healthcare structures 6. Learning theories of health 6.1 The individual as active information processor 6.2 The concept of self-efficacy 7. Coping theories of health 7.1 The relationship between personality traits and health 7.2 The processing of demands and burdens Part C The Genesis of Health 8. Health as salutogenesis 8.1 The concept of the sense of coherence 8.2 The concept of the health disease continuum 9. The model of productive processing of reality 9.1 The relationship between socialisation and health 9.2 Coping with developmental tasks 10. The production and safeguarding of health 11.1 Health promotion and disease prevention 11.2 Prevention and health promotion in the life course 11.3 Examples of promotion strategies 11. Modules of health theory

View More



Klaus Hurrelmann is Senior Professor of Public Health and Education at Hertie School of Governance in Berlin. He was the founding dean of the first school of public health in Germany and established the Interdisciplinary Research Centre for Prevention and Intervention in Childhood and Adolescence at Bielefeld University.

Matthias Richter is Professor and Head of the Institute of Medical Sociology at the Martin-Luther-University, Halle-Wittenberg. For more than 15 years, he has garnered an active interest in the social determinants of health. His research and professional interests include child and adolescent research, with particular focus on explaining health inequalities.