Fit for America: Health, Fitness, Sport, and American Society

Pantheon Books, 1986 - 367 páginas
"It does seem to me that there would not be so much pain and suffering . . . if there were no doctors . . . ." The skepticism reflected in this statement by a New York farmer in 1853, quoted in this fascinating study of medicine, American culture, and values, was definitely a sign of the times. Three medical philosophies and their offshootsheroic, botanic, and homeopathicwere prevalent in the 19th century, often practiced by doctors with little more than six weeks of training. No wonder the skepticism of the massesand the high mortality rates. With meticulous scholarship, keen insight, and clear writing, Green shows how religion, the frontier spirit, ignorance about sanitation, and the national drive for perfection spawned these contrasting philosophies of health. A lively social history with many lessons for our own time, recommended for public and academic libraries.--Library journal, Jack Forman, Mesa College Library, San Diego.

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