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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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One World, or Tinkering with Building Blocks

One World, or Tinkering with Building Blocks

98 One World, or Tinkering with Building Blocks
What Is Medicine?

Paul U. Unschuld

University of California Press

The understanding of polis democracy is drawn on K.D.F. Kitto and François Jacob. The idea of the living world as an “erector set” of “building blocks” is the central metaphor. The entire living world can thus be compared to a giant erector set. The same pieces can be taken apart and put together in different ways, so that different forms are possible but the foundation is always made of the same elements. This accumulation of erector set metaphors makes one sit up and take notice of the living organism as a set of building blocks. This is the evolution of body images from antiquity to the present. The body image of molecular biology is the body image of globalization. The body image of molecular biology is the body image of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The market economy requires a unified world, and it will get one.

Keywords:   polis democracy, K.D.F. Kitto, François Jacob, building blocks, erector, body image

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