Medicine in China: A History of Pharmaceutics

UNSCHULD Paul [Other titles by this author]

ISBN: 9780520050259

California University Press 1986 1st Edition

AU $157.00
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The application of herbal, mineral, animal, and man-made substances in medical therapy has been recorded in China since antiquity. In recent times, traditional Chinese drugs have received increased attention in China and many other countries. The rich body of pharmaceutical knowledge that has evolved over centuries remains a major component of Chinese health care. Chinese healers still prescribe their patients remedies based on formulas elaborated centuries ago. Medicne in China: A History of Pharmaceutics provides a description and analysis of the contents and structure of traditional Chinese pharmaceutical literature. Over the past twenty centuries, a rich canon of works on materia medica - many of which are still extant today - has been published in China. Starting with the earliest systematic records of materia medica from the third century B.C., Paul U. Unschuld has selected some one hundred titles in his far-reaching examination of the history of Chinese pharmaceutics. He documents close links between major currents in Chinese philosophy and Chinese materia medica, and demonstrates the impact of politics on the development of Chinese pharmaceutics. In the course of his analysis, the author describes a broad spectrum of Chinese pharmaceutical knowledge in great detail. Numerous translations of prefaces, drug descriptions, and technical paragraphs from encyclopedic herbals - covering the gamut of materia medica - and from other specialised works - focusing on selected issues, such as dietetics, drug preparation, and specific regions - provide a vivid impression of an important Chinese tradition that has influenced and been influenced by other cultures. The value of the volume as a reference work is increased by separate indexes of the many names of Chinese drugs, authors, and book titles mentioned in the book, and the inclusion of a number of drug illustrations which appeared in the original herbal texts. Medicine in China: A History of Pharmaceutics is a work of exemplary scholarship making available to scholars a wealth of literary sources on the history of medicine and pharmacy in China. It will also make significant contributions to medical anthropology and the history and sociology of science in general.


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Related Subject Areas:

TCM History      Yellow Emperor     

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