This book situates biomedicine within American culture and argues that the very organization and practice of medicine are themselves cultural. It demonstrates the symbolic construction of clinical reality within American biomedicine and shows how biomedicine never leaves the realm of the personal.
Introduction: An Anthropological Interpretation of American Biomedical Culture 1. Medicine, Value Orientations, and Their Meanings 2. Medical Metaphors and Their Role in Clinical Decisionmaking and Practice 3. Medicine, Moralism, and Social Control 4. The Influence of Group Dynamics on Clinical Thinking and Practice 5. Money and Medicine: An Identity Problem 6. Socialization and the Process of Becoming a Physician 7. The Self of the Physician: Links Between Culture and Personality 8. Conclusion: Implications of an Anthropological Approach for the Study, Teaching, and Practice of Biomedicine