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Books, Journals, New Media
September 22/29, 1999

Making DoctorsMaking Doctors: An Institutional Apprenticeship

Author Affiliations

Harriet S.MeyerMD, Contributing EditorJonathan D.EldredgeMLS, PhD, Journal Review EditorRobertHoganMD, adviser for new media


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by Simon Sinclair (Explorations in Anthropology, A University College London Series), 347 pp, with illus, $49.50, ISBN 1-85973-950-4, paper, $19.50, ISBN 1-85973-955-5, New York, NY, Berg Publishers, New York, New York University Press, 1997.

JAMA. 1999;282(12):1191. doi:10.1001/jama.282.12.1191

Given my amateurish interest in anthropology and the fact that both my brother and wife (also a physician) have degrees in the subject, I was sure that I would enjoy this book. Simon Sinclair is a doctor who made an interesting career leap from medicine to anthropology. He had the brilliant idea of studying a class of medical students for his thesis and has written an interesting book documenting his findings.

In it, he confirms, among other things, the oft-repeated and depressing fact that—at least in the United Kingdom—psychiatry, general practice, and geriatrics (my field) comprise the lowest status specialties and that statistics (the basic chassis for the evidence-based approach) is roundly reviled as well.

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