[Skip to Content]
[Skip to Content Landing]
March 8, 1947


JAMA. 1947;133(10):669-675. doi:10.1001/jama.1947.02880100013004

"Nearly half a millenium B. C., Socrates came back from army service to report to his Greek countrymen that in one respect the barbarian Thracians were in advance of Greek civilization: 'They knew that the body could not be cured without the mind. This,' he continued, 'is the reason why the cure of many diseases is unknown to the physicians of Hellas, because they are ignorant of the whole.' "

This quotation, the opening sentence in H. Flanders Dunbar's1 book "Emotions and Bodily Change" is, in effect, a brief of a new approach in modern medicine.

Thus the psychosomaticist frankly admits that his theories are centuries old and effectively forestalls the frequent criticism that the concept of psyche and soma as a unity has nothing new to offer the medical world.

The age of medical specialization was inevitable because, in the modern world, Socrates' "ignorance of the whole" was inevitable.

First Page Preview View Large
First page PDF preview
First page PDF preview