Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Bodies, Therapies, SenseseBook - 2011
Alternative therapies, once the province of the hippie counterculture, are now a mainstream phenomenon. But they are more than a medical and economic sensation. At once spiritual and bodily, medical and recreational, they are an enormously popular cultural practice bound up with the pleasure-seeking drive of consumer culture as well as with spiritual and neo-liberal values.
Complementary and Alternative Medicine critically examines this phenomenon - which some denounce as the triumph of superstition over reason - by asking practitioners themselves what makes these therapies so appealing.
Drawing on a wealth of interviews with Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM) practitioners as well as on the author's longstanding participation in CAM culture, the book provides a much needed look from both the inside and the outside of the CAM phenomenon. This book is essential reading for students and scholars of cultural studies, anthropology, sensory studies and sociology.
Alternative medicine therapies have evolved from the province of the hippy counterculture movement in the 1960s to be firmly established in mainstream healthcare in the 21st century. This book critcally examines the alternative medicine phenomenon by asking Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM) practitioners what makes these therapies so appealing, drawing on comprehensive interviews and the author's longstanding participation in this field. Providing a wealth of information from both within the CAM community and around the CAM culture, this text explains the medical and economic sensation of alternative medicine, at once spiritual, medical, recreational and physical. It also examines different viewpoints on the subject from denouncements of alternative medicine as "the triumph of superstition over reason" to a "popular cultural phenomenon that fits the pleasure-seeking drive of consumerism with spiritual and neo-liberal undertones".
Complementary and Alternative Medicine is essential reading for students and scholars of cultural studies, anthropology, sensory studies and sociology.