Making Bodies Kosher
The Politics of Reproduction among Haredi Jews in England

Berghahn Books 2019

This is an analysis of the ways in which Haredi Jews negotiate healthcare services using theoretical perspectives in political philosophy. It will allow readers to understand how reproductive care issues affect this growing minority population.

Making Bodies Kosher is available as an Open Access download, thanks to the Wellcome Trust.

“A successful juxtaposition of the history of medicine, Jewish Studies and medical anthropology, Making Bodies Kosher re-assesses sweeping categorisations of ethno- religious minorities and their complex relationships to public health interventions and health care.” Social History of Medicine

“This somewhat prophetic text is timely for the various online syllabi medical anthropologists are preparing for teaching amid the COVID-19 pandemic.”
Medical Anthropology Quarterly

“In this novel ethnography, Ben Kasstan advances an illuminating perspective on public healthcare as a borderland for religious minority groups in England. The book offers an important theoretical resource for others who are uncomfortable with the ‘hard-to-reach’ descriptor, particularly those of us who are working with economically marginalised minority populations or in the context of hard-hitting gender inequalities.”  Medicine Anthropology Theory

Peer-Reviewed Articles

“If a Rabbi Did Say ‘You Have to Vaccinate,’ We Wouldn’t”: Unveiling the Secular Logics of Religious Exemption and Opposition to Vaccination

Social Science & Medicine 2021

“A Free People, Controlled Only By God”: Circulating and Converting Criticism of Vaccination in Jerusalem

Culture, Medicine & Psychiatry 2021

SARS-CoV-2 Seroprevalence in a Strictly-Orthodox Jewish Community in the UK: A Retrospective Cohort Study

Lancet Regional Health – Europe 2021
Co-authored with Kate Gaskell et al.

Vaccines and Vitriol: An Anthropological Commentary on Vaccine Hesitancy, Decision-Making and Interventionism among Religious Minorities

Anthropology & Medicine 2020

“I Didn’t Know How to be With My Husband”: State-Religion Struggles over Sex Education in Israel and England

Anthropology & Education Quarterly 2020
Co-authored with Lea Taragin-Zeller

Arbitrating Abortion: Sex-Selection and Care Work among Abortion Providers in England

Medical Anthropology 2020
Co-authored with Maya Unnithan

Sniff and Tell: The Feasibility of using Bio-Detection Dogs as a Mobile Diagnostic Intervention for Asymptomatic Malaria 

Journal of Biosocial Science 2019

Co-authored with Kate Hampshire et al.

Reproductive Rebellions in Britain and the Republic of Ireland: Contemporary and Past Abortion Activism and Alternative Sites of Care

Feminist Encounters 2018
Co-authored with Sarah Crook

Positioning Oneself and being Positioned in the ‘Community’: An Essay on Jewish Ethnography as a ‘Jew-ish’ Ethnographer

2016 Scripta Instituti Donneriani Aboensis: special issue on Jewish Studies in the Nordic Countries Today

Tokens of Trauma: The Aging Experience of Shoah Survivors in a Jewish Support Center

2015 Anthropology & Aging

The Taste of Trauma: Reflections of Ageing Shoah Survivors on Food and how they (re)inscribe it with Meaning

2015 Scripta Instituti Donneriani Aboensis: Special issue on Religion and Food

Discovery and Validation of Urinary Metabotypes for the Diagnosis of Hepatocellular Carcinoma in West Africans

2014 Hepatology
Co-authored with Nimzing Ladep et al.

Book Chapters

Haredi (Material) Cultures of Health at the ‘Hard to Reach’ Margins of the State

Bloomsbury 2017
Edited by Timothy Carroll, David Jeevendrampillai, Aaron Parkhurst and Julie Shackelford

‘Some of the best contributions have to do with health, identity, and religious beliefs under conditions of globalisation … Kasstan’s fascinating exploration of the Haredi Jewish community exposes its negotiation and contestation of the treatment and transportation of the sick and of human bodies’ – Journal of Anthropological Research

Book Reviews

Review | Anti/Vax: Reframing the Vaccination Controversy, by Bernice Hausman
Sociology of Health & Illness 2020

Review | Chronic Illness in a Pakistani Labour Diaspora, by Kaveri Qureshi
Sociology of Health & Illness 2019

Review | Testing Fate: Tay Sachs Disease and the Right to be Responsible, by Shelley Z. Reuter
Medical Anthropology Quarterly 2017

Review | Ethnographies of Breastfeeding: Cultural Contexts and Confrontations, edited by Tanya Cassidy and Abdullahi El Tom
Somatosphere 2015

Review | Improvising Medicine: An African Oncology Ward in an Emerging Cancer Epidemic, by Julie Livingston
BMJ Medical Humanities 2014

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