Causal models are a key element for examining cross-cultural as well as expertise variation in explanatory models of illness. Yet, anthropological studies comparing causal models often focus on the content of these models and fail to examine variation in the structure and role of individual causal features in causal models of disease. In this article, I analyze variation in causal models of diabetes among a sample of registered nurses and lay community members in the United States and Guatemala. Utilizing a cause-by-cause questionnaire, I measure patterns of variation and agreement in direct causal interactions between features. Constructing causal networks, I examine similarities and differences in the structure as well as the role of specific causal features within these networks. These results demonstrate that biomedical expertise and sociocultural context are associated with different aspects of the structure and content of explanatory models of diabetes.
- Casual networks of illness
- Cultural variation
- Expertise variation
- Explanatory models
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Sociology and Political Science
- Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)