Biomedicine & Alt Healing Systems: Issues Of Class, Race, And Gender

Biomedicine & Alt Healing Systems: Issues Of Class, Race, And Gender

by Hans A. Baer
     
 

ISBN-10: 0299166945

ISBN-13: 9780299166946

Pub. Date: 05/02/2001

Publisher: University of Wisconsin Press

"A concise, wide-ranging synthesis of the history of alternative medicine in the United States, its social composition, and its relations to conventional biomedicine."

-David Hess, author of Science and the New Age

Examining medical pluralism in the United States from the Revolutionary War period through the end of the twentieth century, Hans Baer

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Overview

"A concise, wide-ranging synthesis of the history of alternative medicine in the United States, its social composition, and its relations to conventional biomedicine."

-David Hess, author of Science and the New Age

Examining medical pluralism in the United States from the Revolutionary War period through the end of the twentieth century, Hans Baer brings together in one convenient reference a vast array of information on healing systems as diverse as Christian Science, osteopathy, acupuncture, Santeria, southern Appalachian herbalism, evangelical faith healing, and Navajo healing.

In a country where the dominant paradigm of biomedicine (medical schools, research hospitals, clinics staffed by M.D.s and R.N.s,) has been long established and supported by laws and regulations, the continuing appeal of other medical systems and subsystems bears careful consideration. Distinctions of class, Baer emphasizes, as well as differences in race, ethnicity, and gender, are fundamental to the diversity of beliefs, techniques, and social organizations represented in the phenomenon of medical pluralism.

Baer traces the simultaneous emergence in the nineteenth century of formalized biomedicine and of homeopathy, botanic medicine, hydropathy, Christian Science, osteopathy, and chiropractic. He examines present-day osteopathic medicine as a system parallel to biomedicine with an emphasis on primary care; chiropractic, naturopathy, and acupuncture as professionalized heterodox medical systems; homeopathy, herbalism, bodywork, and lay midwifery in the context of the holistic health movement; Anglo-American religious healing; and folk medical systems, particularly among racial and ethnic minorities. In closing, he focuses on the persistence of folk medical systems among working-class Americans and considers the growing interest of biomedical physicians, pharmaceutical and health care corporations, and government in the holistic health movement

Author Biography: Hans A. Baer is professor of anthropology at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock. He is the author or editor of eight books on anthropological aspects of race, religion, and medicine, including Encounters with Biomedicine: Case Studies in Medical Anthropology.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780299166946
Publisher:
University of Wisconsin Press
Publication date:
05/02/2001
Edition description:
1
Pages:
240
Product dimensions:
5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.60(d)

Table of Contents

Preface
Acknowledgments
Introduction3
1Nineteenth-Century American Medicine as a Pluralistic System7
2The Rise of the American Dominative Medical System under Corporate Capitalism31
3Osteopathic Medicine as a Parallel Medical System50
4Chiropractic as the Foremost Professionalized Heterodox Medical System67
5Naturopathy and Acupuncture as Secondary Professionalized Heterodox Medical Systems85
6Partially Professionalized and Lay Heterodox Medical Systems within the Context of the Holistic Health Movement103
7Anglo-American Religious and Metaphysical Healing Systems121
8Folk Medical Systems in a Culturally Diverse Society144
9Conclusion179
Bibliography193
Index217

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