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Reason and Medicine  -  Art and Science of Healing from Antiquity to Modern Times
Reason and Medicine - Art and Science of Healing from Antiquity to Modern Times

Reason and Medicine - Art and Science of Healing from Antiquity to Modern Times

by Daya Ram Varma

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Product ID:32854




Three Essays


9788188789832 - Year: 2013 - Pages: 354



Daya Ram Varma
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Author: Daya Ram Varma
Publisher: Three Essays
Year: 2013
Language: English
Pages: 354
ISBN/UPC (if available): 9788188789832


There is no such thing as Chinese, Hindu, Islamic or European physics or chemistry. Why then are there distinct schools of medicine (Ayurvedic, Chinese, Unani, Homeopathic, etc.)? What has been the role of witchcraft in the history of healing? What has been the contribution of women in healing and medicine – in antiquity and in the modern world? Why has the materialist outlook been so important for the development of modern medicine? Why do other schools of medicine survive in the modern age?

Is ancient Greek medicine the only heritage of modern medicine? What have been the Islamic contributions to science and medicine? What has been the political economy of medicine under capitalism? How did the development of capitalism lead to advances in medicine and health care?

Why does medical research today pay great attention to diseases of the rich and of the developed countries than to diseases that affect the majority in developing countries? What is the role of pharmaceutical giants in making health care inaccessible? Why is the expansion of a universal public health care system so important? What constitutes medical ethics?

The reader will find answers to these and many other questions in a language that is lucid and friendly.


The book is a treasure of information and deep insights. It has taught me a lot, particularly on the importance of philosophy and politics for medicine.
= Mario Bunge, Professor Emeritus, Philosophy, McGill University

This book is brilliant and wise, full of unexpected insights, and a delight to read! It is the kind of rare book that only a practising scientist with a deep awareness of medicine, therapeutics, politics and societies can write. A materialist framework is critical for understanding the history of any science, and this book is the most astute of any book I have read on the history of medicine. The science of physiology and the art of healing are merged in medicine, and the author truly grasps the significance of both.
= Professor Mriganka Sur, FRS, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

I stand in awe at the author’s encyclopedic knowledge, placing medicine in an economic and social context and ranging over several civilizations even while referring to many movies and their actors, and mentioning the name of the most recent Indian-origin recipient of the Nobel prize. At the same time, Dr. Varma remains true both to his political values and professional calling. The author underlines the explosive power of capitalism for good even as he recognizes its shortcomings. A superb book!
= Baldev Raj Nayar, Professor Emeritus, Political Science, McGill University

Dr. Daya Varma’s book is fascinating, full of rich insights into the history, science, political economy, cultural and social aspects of medicine. It is a people’s history of medicine and refreshingly non-Eurocentric view of medical science.
= William Dere in Frontier

The premises in the book are clearly spelt out, the arguments cogently put across, the style is lucid and examples from many situations familiar to the lay reader makes it a good buy.
= Mridula Ramanna in Economic and Political Weekly


The Art and Science of Medicine
Socio-political Determinants of Medical Science
The Age of Spiritual Medicine
Empirical Medicine: Ayurveda
The Transition to Materialist Medicine: Ayurveda
The Transition to Materialist Medicine: Chinese Medicine
The Age of Materialism: Greek Medicine
The Age of Stagnation of Medical Science
Islamic Medicine
The Age of Witch Hunt
The Age of Allopathy [overdosing] and Homeopathy
Therapeutics since Antiquity
Modern Medicine Comes of Age
Medical Ethics and Medical Science
The Sun Rises in the West
Survival of the Fit and the Unfit Medicines
Appendix 1
Natural Drugs
Subject Index

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