Introduction: China and the Globalization of Biomedicine

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Book Chapter

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Today China is a major player in advancing the frontiers of biomedicine, yet previous accounts have examined only whether medical ideas and institutions created in the West were successfully transferred to China. This is the first book to demonstrate the role China played in creating a globalized biomedicine between 1850 and 1950. This was China's "Century of Humiliation" when imperialist powers dominated China's foreign policy and economy, forcing it to join global trends that included limited public health measures in the nineteenth century and government-sponsored healthcare in the twentieth. These external pressures, combined with a vast population immiserated by imperialism and the decline of the Chinese traditional economy, created extraordinary problems for biomedicine that were both unique to China and potentially applicable to other developing nations. In this book, scholars based in China, the United States, and the United Kingdom make the case that developments in biomedicine in China such as the discovery of new diseases, the opening of the medical profession to women, the mass production of vaccines, and the delivery of healthcare to poor rural areas should be at the center of our understanding of biomedicine, not at the periphery.


Book introduction for China and the Globalization of Biomedicine

ISBN: 9781580469425, hardback, 9781787444454, ebook



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