Thomas Schramme
Universität Hamburg
The paper contrasts Lennart Nordenfelt’s normative theory of health with the naturalists’ point of view, especially in the version developed by Christopher Boorse. In the first part it defends Boorse’s analysis of disease against the charge that it falls short of its own standards by not being descriptive. The second part of the paper sets out to analyse the positive concept of health and introduces a distinction between a positive definition of health and a positive conception of health. An objection against Nordenfelt’s account is developed by making use of a specific example of an ambitious athlete. It is stated that Nordenfelt’s conceptualisation includes too many phenomena under the umbrella of ill health. An ideal conception of health like Nordenfelt’s is in danger of supporting medicalization. In conclusion, although Nordenfelt’s theory is not altogether rejected and even seen in congruence with Boorse’s account, it is claimed that the naturalistic framework should obtain conceptual priority.
Keywords Medicine & Public Health   Theory of Medicine/Bioethics   Medical Law   Ethics   History of Medicine
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Reprint years 2007
DOI 10.1007/s11019-006-9019-1
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References found in this work BETA

The Concepts of Health and Illness Revisited.Lennart Nordenfelt - 2006 - Medicine, Health Care and Philosophy 10 (1):5-10.
An Agenda for Future Debate on Concepts of Health and Disease.George Khushf - 2007 - Medicine, Health Care and Philosophy 10 (1):19-27.
A Qualified Defence of a Naturalist Theory of Health.Thomas Schramme - 2006 - Medicine, Health Care and Philosophy 10 (1):11-17.

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Citations of this work BETA

Is Natural Food Healthy?Helena Siipi - 2013 - Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics 26 (4):797-812.

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