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What Is Medicine?Western and Eastern Approaches to Healing$
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Paul Unschuld

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780520257658

Published to California Scholarship Online: May 2012

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520257658.001.0001

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China in the Nineteenth Century: A New Cage Opens Up

China in the Nineteenth Century: A New Cage Opens Up

79 China in the Nineteenth Century: A New Cage Opens Up
What Is Medicine?

Paul U. Unschuld

University of California Press

The cultural upper class of Chinese civilization had been adhered to a medicine that owed its plausibility to the structures of the ancient unification of kingdoms for two millennia, from the first century bc to the nineteenth century. It equally owed its plausibility to the sociopolitical ideals of the Confucian and legalistic social philosophers. The ancient doctrines of social theory had become rigid over the centuries. The structures of the ancient empire were now dated. The empire faltered in the nineteenth and fell at the beginning of the twentieth century. Totally new ways of organizing social life were first promoted as ideals and later formed into reality. Customary medical thinking did not have a chance, even for short-term survival. A few insistent authors' verbose, anachronistic attempt to halt the threatening decline but in vain.

Keywords:   Chinese civilization, medicine, unification of kingdoms, sociopolitical ideals, doctrines of social theory

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