Hope in Health: The Socio-politics of Optimism

Research output: Book/ReportBookResearchpeer-review

23 Citations (Scopus)


The language of hope permeates contemporary health and healthcare. It is believed that patients who are hopeful are more likely to recover, and health professionals endeavour to instil or manage hope in patients. The rhetoric of hope is extensively employed in marketing medical tests, treatments and devices. Despite this focus on hope in health, sociologists and other social scientists have failed to offer a systematic analysis of the discourses of hope and related practices. This book is the first to explore the socio-politics of hope in the contexts of health and healthcare. It highlights the significance of technological promise in contemporary conceptions of hope, making reference to examples such as stem cell treatments, medical testing, personal risk management, the use of self-tracking devices, and anti-ageing treatments and longevity research. The book concludes by arguing for scholars to take more seriously the significance of hope in the contexts of health and healthcare.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationBasingstoke UK
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan
Number of pages175
ISBN (Print)9780230361935
Publication statusPublished - 2015


  • Psychology
  • Health Psychology
  • Sociology
  • Science and Technology Studies
  • Heallth, Illness and Medical Sociology

Cite this