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The error of excessive proximity preference – a modest proposal for understanding holism

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This paper exposes some examples of continuing murky thinking concerning holism. The exposure is a prelude to noting the importance of proximity in causal explanations of illnesses and wounds. The paper then draws attention to how the proximate should not hold exclusive sway regarding what constitutes best nursing treatment and care. The error of excessive preference for proximity is shown to be an error, using as an example the treatment of leg ulcers. One component of holism that can be clearly expressed amounts therefore simply to the claim: resist the error of excessive proximity preference, resist the error of concentrating solely on nearness. It is left open whether there is any further sense to be gleaned from the holistic babble.

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1046/j.1466-769x.2000.00003.x

Affiliations: Visiting Lecturer in Philosophy, The City University, London, and Associate Lecturer in Philosophy, The Open University

Publication date: July 1, 2000

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