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Neither Donkey nor HorseMedicine in the Struggle over China's Modernity$
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Sean Hsiang-lin Lei

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780226169880

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: May 2015

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226169910.001.0001

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Science as a Verb:

Science as a Verb:

Scientizing Chinese Medicine and the Rise of Mongrel Medicine

(p.141) 7 Science as a Verb
Neither Donkey nor Horse

Sean Hsiang-lin Lei

University of Chicago Press

Based on the discovery that it was the Nationalist state that popularized the project of “scientizing Chinese medicine” by establishing the Institute of National Medicine in 1931, Chapter 7 analyzes two related developments. First, as an ideological tool, this project allowed Chen Guofu and Chen Lifu to reconcile the conflict between scientism and cultural nationalism for the Nationalist party. Second, as a vision for medical syncretism, it represented a decisive break from the pre-modern conception of “converging Chinese and Western medicine.” Because this project required traditional practitioners to take science seriously, it gave birth to a new and hybrid medicine, which came to be stigmatized by its opponents as a “mongrel medicine.” To document the emergence of this new medicine, this chapter examines how this project of “scientizing Chinese medicine” motivated, gave shape to, and at the same denied the possibility of such a species of “mongrel medicine.”

Keywords:   National Medicine, scientization, Mongrel Medicine, hybridity, Lu Yuanlei, China Scientization Movement, Chen Guofu, Chen Lifu, modernity, converging Chinese and Western medicine

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