Chinese Medicine in Early Communist China, 1945-1963: A Medicine of Revolution, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Chinese Medicine in Early Communist China, 1945-1963

A Medicine of Revolution, 1st Edition

By Kim Taylor


248 pages | 2 B/W Illus.

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Using original sources, this significant text looks at the transformation of Chinese medicine from a marginal, side-lined medical practice of the early twentieth century, to an essential and high-profile part of the national health-care system under the Chinese Communist Party. The political, economic and social motives which drove this promotion are analyzed and the extraordinary role that Chinese medicine was meant to play in Mao Zedong's revolution is fully explored for the first time, making a major contribution to the history of Chinese medicine.


'Kim Taylor's book, Chinese Medicine in Early Communist China, is a gratifying addition to the list of genuinely new historical studies.' - China Quarterly

'Taylor has written a significant work thath makes real contributions to our understanding of changing pedagogic and therapeutic practices in Chinese medicine.' - China Journal

'The first coherent analysis of non-"Western" medicine in the People's Republic … a welcome contribution to a timely topic, of high academic standard and succinctly written in accessible language.' - Asian Affairs

What Taylor offers is a dense descriptive investigation illuminating the

dimensions of political rhetoric within the processes of the development and

canonization of medical knowledge in the early years of the People’s Republic of

China. - Angelika C. Messner

Table of Contents

Acknowledgements Introduction 1. A New, Scientific and Unified Medicine: Civil War in China and the New Acupuncture, 1945-1949 2. Pathway for the New Medicine: The Unification of Chinese and Western Medicine, 1949-1953 3. Modernising the Old: The Creation of a 'Traditional' Chinese Medicine, 1953-1956 4. Establishing a National Treasure Trove of TCM: The Standardisation of Chinese Medicine, 1957-1963 Conclusion

About the Author

Kim Taylor is an affiliated scholar at the Department of History and Philosophy of Science, University of Cambridge. Her research interests include the history of disease, medicine and the imperial world and nineteenth and twentieth-century Chinese medicine.

About the Series

Needham Research Institute Series

Joseph Needham's 'Science and Civilisation' series began publication in the 1950s. At first, it was seen as a piece of brilliant but isolated pioneering. However, at the beginning of the twenty-first century, it is clear that Needham's work has succeeded in creating a vibrant new intellectual field in the West. The books in this series cover topics relating broadly to the practice of science, technology and medicine in East Asia, including China, Japan, Korea, and Vietnam. The emphasis is on traditional forms of knowledge and practice, but without excluding modern studies which connect the topics with their historical and cultural context.

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
HISTORY / Asia / China
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Ethnic Studies / General