Phenomenology of Illness

Phenomenology of Illness

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The experience of illness is a universal and substantial part of human existence. Like death, illness raises important philosophical issues. But unlike death, illness, and in particular the experience of being ill, has received little philosophical attention. This may be because illness is often understood as a physiological process that falls within the domain of medical science, and is thus outside the purview of philosophy. In Phenomenology of Illness
Havi Carel argues that the experience of illness has been wrongly neglected by philosophers and proposes to fill the lacuna. Phenomenology of Illness provides a distinctively philosophical account of illness. Using phenomenology, the philosophical method for first-person investigation, Carel explores how illness
modifies the ill person's body, values, and world. The aim of Phenomenology of Illness is twofold: to contribute to the understanding of illness through the use of philosophy and to demonstrate the importance of illness for philosophy. Contra the philosophical tendency to resist thinking about illness, Carel proposes that illness is a philosophical tool. Through its pathologising effect, illness distances the ill person from taken for granted routines and habits and reveals aspects of
human existence that normally go unnoticed. Phenomenology of Illness develops a phenomenological framework for illness and a systematic understanding of illness as a philosophical tool.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 272 pages
  • 163 x 219 x 15mm | 334g
  • Oxford, United Kingdom
  • English
  • Reprint
  • 0198822669
  • 9780198822660
  • 447,109

Table of contents

1: Why use phenomenology to study illness?
2: Phenomenological features of the body
3: The body in illness
4: Bodily doubt
5: Phenomenology of breathlessness
6: Illness and wellbeing
7: Illness as Being-towards-death
8: Epistemic injustice in illness
9: The philosophical role of illness
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Review quote

Phenomenology of Illness provides a compelling way forward in thinking through the complexities, ambiguities, and uncertainties of health and illness and disability.This is also a book that is eminently readable. While Carel is definitely issuing a call to arms for philosophers and healthcare professionals, this book is also clear and accessible enough for medical humanists, healthcare researchers and clinicians, those with a budding interest in philosophy
and those experiencing, anticipating, or responding to illness. * Anna K. Swartz, Metapsychology * For those who chose to think and reflect about illness, life and how to live well there is a rich feast of food for thought within these pages * Katherine Hall, Medical Humanities * Opens one's eyes to the difficulties undergone in the everyday activities of the ill person ... On an academic level, it has made a convincing case for the use, indeed necessity, of phenomenology for healthcare practice in its treatment of illness as the experience extends far beyond being diseased. Within philosophy, it is the most valuable and detailed work on the subject so far * Joseph Walsh, Phenomenological Reviews * Carel seems to have written Phenomenology of Illness with multiple audiences in mind: philosophers, health-care professionals and students, and people who have chronic illnesses. She has much to say to philosophers, but her writing is clear and accessible to readers without a philosophy background as well...I was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to test and validate this claim with the help of medical students and nursing PhD students this semester.
This text was an extremely valuable resource for helping students to develop a greater understanding of the ways illness drastically changes a person's life as a whole. I have high hopes that these students will be more attuned to their patients' concerns as a result of their engagement with this book. * Christine Wieseler, Hypatia Reviews *
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About Havi Carel

Havi Carel is Professor of Philosophy at the University of Bristol, where she also teaches medical students. Her research examines the experience of illness and of receiving healthcare. She was recently awarded a Senior Investigator Award by the Wellcome Trust, for a five year project entitled 'Life of Breath' (with Prof Jane Macnaughton, Durham University). She has previously published on the embodied experience of illness, wellbeing within illness and
patient-clinician communication in the Lancet, BMJ, Journal of Medicine and Philosophy, Theoretical Medicine and Bioethics, Medicine, Healthcare and Philosophy, and in edited collections. Havi is the author of Illness (2008, 2013), shortlisted for the Wellcome Trust Book Prize, and of Life and Death in Freud and
Heidegger (2006). She is the co-editor of Health, Illness and Disease (2012) and of What Philosophy Is (2004).
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Rating details

22 ratings
4 out of 5 stars
5 32% (7)
4 45% (10)
3 14% (3)
2 9% (2)
1 0% (0)
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