Methodological Prospects of History of Everyday Life in Ukrainian Historical and Medical Local Studies




The author of the paper reveals theoretical and methodological prospects of research in Ukrainian historical and medical local studies using approaches and means of history of everyday life. The latter is already an approved direction of the Ukrainian historiography, which naturally covers the issues of providing and receiving medical care. However, this aspect is still far from full realization. A significant role in the actualization of the direction belongs to local lore researchers, who were the first in Ukraine to apply what is today called the "anthropological concept of history". The methodological paradigm of the medical branch of history of everyday life based on interdisciplinarity, attention to interpersonal communication "doctor/healer – patient", their typical and atypical patterns. Behavior of physicians and patients, their relationships, perceptions of health care, its conditions, quality and accessibility attract an attention of researchers of everyday life. Through a multidisciplinary approach and a study of a cultural and social context, it has become possible to ask how society had viewed physicians and treatment procedures, how the concept of health had changed, in which cases a person had decided to see a doctor or avoid medical care. Author concludes that everyday life history opens up a vast prospect of scientific search in the near future for researchers of historical medical local studies. The most promising out of these is the behavioral approach, which could be used from the point of view of behavior and communication of actors, granting to the patient "voting right", application of qualitative research methods and involvement of the micro-historical approach combined with macro-historical and ethnographic achievements. The latter is especially relevant for studying problems of health care for rural residents. It is also appropriate to use specific instruments of oral history. Analysis of the existing historical narrative on the topic shows that qualitative realization of abovementioned potential possibilities at the current stage of development of the national historiography is possible only at the local level. The approach “from below” common for history of everyday life is the most effective at the level of cities and regions; therefore, the historiography confidently uses inductive way. Thus, that is a challenge for local lore researchers.