Empathy and the Practice of Medicine by
Publication Date: 1996-02-21
The book--a collection of essays by physicians, philosophers, and a nurse--is divided into three parts: one deals with how empathy is weakened or lost during the course of medical education and suggests how to remedy this; another describes the historical and philosophical origins of empathy and provides arguments for and against it; and a third section offers compelling accounts of how physicians' empathy for their patients has affected their own lives and the lives of those in their care. Medicine, asserts most of these authors, is both science and narrative, reason and intuition. Empathy underlies the qualities of the humanistic physician and must frame the skills of all professionals who care for patients.