Health and Functional Efficiency

Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 39 (6):634-647 (2014)
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Abstract

This essay argues that what is central to Christopher Boorse’s biostatistical theory of disease as statistically subnormal part function (BST) are comparisons of the “functional efficiency” of parts and processes and that statistical considerations serve only to pick out a healthy level of functional efficiency. On this interpretation, the distinction between health and pathology is less important than comparisons of functional efficiency, which are entirely independent of statistical considerations. The clarifications or revisions of the BST that this essay offers are friendly amendments that render moot some of the most prominent criticisms of Boorse’s account

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Daniel Hausman
University of Wisconsin, Madison

Citations of this work

Evolution, Dysfunction, and Disease: A Reappraisal.Paul E. Griffiths & John Matthewson - 2018 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 69 (2):301-327.
Naturalism about Health and Disease: Adding Nuance for Progress.Elselijn Kingma - 2014 - Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 39 (6):590-608.
The Line-drawing Problem in Disease Definition.Wendy A. Rogers & Mary Jean Walker - 2017 - Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 42 (4):405-423.
Current Dilemmas in Defining the Boundaries of Disease.Jenny Doust, Mary Jean Walker & Wendy A. Rogers - 2017 - Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 42 (4):350-366.

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References found in this work

Health as a theoretical concept.Christopher Boorse - 1977 - Philosophy of Science 44 (4):542-573.
A rebuttal on health.Christopher Boorse - 1997 - In James M. Humber & Robert F. Almeder (eds.), What is Disease? Humana Press. pp. 1--134.
3. A Rebuttal on Functions.Christopher Boorse - 2002 - In Andre Ariew, Robert C. Cummins & Mark Perlman (eds.), Functions: New Essays in the Philosophy of Psychology and Biology. Oxford University Press. pp. 63.

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