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Lecture 3

EAS396H1 Lecture 3: EAS396 Lecture 3

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East Asian Studies
Wen- Ching Sung

EAS396 Lecture 3 Review: Chinese Medicine and Modernity • Empirical cases of scientizing Chinese medicine • the creation of “Traditional Chinese Medicine” (TCM) in 1950s • Only one representation of the body is truthful • Crossing the Great Divide: tradition vs. modern, East vs. West etc. o non-science and science • What is science? o Efficacy is not science o Chinese medicine: personalized medicine or anecdotes? o Evidence-based medicine: Evidence is constructed by randomized double-blind clinical trials o invisibility vs. visibility ▪ Chinese medicine would be invisible • Multiple realities of the body: concepts, sensibility, embodied experiences o incommensurability: ▪ a term in philosophy of science ▪ “no common measure” of two theories • e.g., there are two scientific theories in front of us but there are no two theories in front of us • we cannot find a acupuncture point in theory or vitality in bio-medicine ▪ discussed by Ludwik Fleck in the 1930s, and popularized by Thomas Kuhn in the 1960s This Week: Saving China via Science: State and Scientists • Tsien hsue-shen • Similarity: they have to put the state priority as their career priority • The differences highlight the complicated relation between state and scientists o State as powerful patronage o scientists are critical resources to advance knowledge and technology o tensions between political regimes and values • Between 1949 and 1970s, Chinese science developed at the interplay between Mao’s regime and Cold War • use a transnational perspective to understand the development of S&T in China • Tensions between political regimes and values embedded in science • explain the rise of red engineers in post-Mao era State & Scientists • Chinese/American scientists in Cold War • Chinese scientists in Mao’s regime
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