Medical pluralism – bibliography

by Gabriele Alex, Kristine Krause, David Parkin and Stephanie Stocker

Working Papers WP 12-12
July 2012
ISSN 2192-2357 (MMG Working Papers Print)

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Bibliographies inevitably remain incomplete. They can never cover the whole literature existing in one field of research, not to mention the problem of defining the borders of any of such fields. Therefore, the most important task of bibliographies is to offer pathways through the literature. In order to inform the reader what kind of pathways this bibliography represents, and to clarify what the bibliography does not include, a few words about its construction are in order.

We offer with this bibliography a thematic clustering of publications on medical pluralism – meaning the co-existence of different therapeutic practices in one context – including biomedicine, spiritual healing, herbal medicine, and so called alternative and complementary medicines. Although facets of medical pluralism have been touched upon in earlier studies, e.g. on cosmologies, spiritual protection, and healing, the topic came into full swing only in the 1970s. This bibliography therefore covers classical studies from the 1970s up to very recent work.

The articles are grouped under different headings representing key topics in the discussion. The grouping of single articles or books is however in many cases problematic, because of overlaps between the topics.

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