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February 1958

Scientific Method and Social Role in Medicine and Psychiatry

Author Affiliations

Syracuse, N. Y.

Professor, Department of Psychiatry, State University of New York College of Medicine, Upstate Medical Center.

AMA Arch Intern Med. 1958;101(2):228-238. doi:10.1001/archinte.1958.00260140060010

It is a great pleasure and a privilege to join with Dr. Castle's friends, colleagues, and former students in celebrating his 60th birthday by contributing to a Festschrift in his honor.

Although the note which I will introduce stems from my work in psychiatry and psychoanalysis, I believe that it is nevertheless fitting for the occasion. I propose to consider the similarities and differences between medicine and psychiatry. This subject is usually debated in informal gatherings in a personal and impressionistic fashion. Instead of this approach, my purpose here is to present a scientific inquiry into this subject, meaning thereby an examination of medicine and psychiatry as bodies of knowledge, methods of treatment, and professional roles in society.

The Common-Sense Approach to Medicine and Psychiatry  I shall begin with what may be called the common-sense approach to medicine and psychiatry. According to this view, medicine comprises a very large area

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