T. J. Hinrichs
and Linda L. Barnes
have produced a volume that will change the way we learn about and teach the history of health and healing in China and beyond. Chinese Medicine and Healing: An Illustrated History (
Harvard University Press, 2012) collects ten chronologically-organized chapters that each explore practices of health and healing in a specific historical period, ranging from oracle bones in the pre-Han period to modern McDonald's restaurant dÃ©cor. Each chapter is supplemented by short vignettes that introduce noteworthy texts, important concepts, or examples relevant to and contemporary with the material in the chapter. Taken together, the resulting volume can be used and enjoyed by a wide range of readers, from instructors and students in a university classroom to interested browsers on a Sunday afternoon in the park. It's a phenomenal accomplishment and makes for an enjoyable and compelling read. In the course of our conversation, we talked about a wide range of issues germane to the volume, the research and writing of each of the editors, and the wider field of medicine and healing in China. Enjoy!