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Health – Neoliberalism

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HEALTH – NEOLIBERALISM:

The propaganda inherent in neoliberal discourse combined with the constant promotion of consumerist mentality has altered the contemporary society. The fundamental shift is that our society has moved to one that understands what something means entirely via the market place. What is valuable and what is not is determined by the demand it has through the free market. All this in turn has had an effect upon so many important aspects within our society, namely health. As a matter of opinion, due to our society being driven by the free market and the commodification of everything, we have created unhealthy obsessions with materials that demote our individual health. Furthermore, this commodified pursuit has also had wider implications upon health related institutions such as hospitals and research centers, which also has an overall negative impact on our health and wellbeing.

Contemporary society’s commodification of everything has created a society unhealthily obsessed with consumption and materials. The amalgamation of several cultures throughout the world due to rise of globalization has created ambiguity in cultural identity. The traditional cultural values that define us, and have allowed our antecedents to live healthily for so many years are slowly being lost. We have gradually begun to lose our identity and are forgetting who we are. This has led to the pursuit of finding values that will allow us to fit into the contemporary world and will allow us to find identity and a will to live on. Here, we are subject to complex structures of power that dictate our social judgment. We are encouraged to construct identities in terms that are aligned with consumer culture. This consumer-consumption culture has created a lifestyle only concerned with the materialistic value of things. We have lost our knowledge on what is truly valuable to us and gives us true happiness – such as nature, animals, love and so forth. Instead, we are devoting our full attention on materialistic things that only provide us with temporary happiness. It creates an insatiable obsession with things not worthy of attention and drives us into problems that plummet our health and wellbeing.

The commodification of institutions creates a mentality that everything should be done for profits rather than the greater good – this entails grave consequences. The dominant process underlying the transformation of life in all societies is the conversion of all things into commodities. The lack of market regulation and prevention has also led to institutions such as hospitals and research centers also being commodified. Instead of scientists working together to find cures to fatal diseases such as cancer, they are patenting their ideas. This shows us that these research scientists, who should be working for the greater good are merely profit orientated like the rest of the society.

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