The holistic health movement: A survey and critique

Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 6 (2):209-235 (1981)
This article discusses the nature and significance of the holistic health movement in four ways. First, a general characterization of the movement is proposed, based on shared commitment to five assumptions: (1) a positive view of health as well-being, (2) individual responsibility for health, (3) the importance of health education, (4) control of social and environmental determinants of health, and (5) low technology or "natural" therapeutic techniques. Second, a basic difference among advocates of holistic health/medicine is proposed in terms of the presence or absence of commitment to scientific method. Third, holistic health/medicine is briefly compared with concepts of holism in biology and in the social sciences. Finally, criticisms of each of the basic tenets of the holistic health movement are offered. CiteULike Connotea What's this?
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