Individual care? power and subjectivity in therapeutic relationships
Sociology, 26, (4), . (doi:10.1177/0038038592026004003).
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Ideas about interpersonal relations between health care practitioners and their clients have been radically reformulated over the past two decades. In the face of critiques of the ways in which health care systems objectified the populations which they served, a new vocabulary - stressing holistic and personal care - has become thoroughly accommodated within health professions. This paper examines the ways in which this new definition of the patient raises questions about power and control in health care. The paper takes as a concrete example the practices involved in the nursing care of the terminally ill. However, at a general level the arguments advanced here may be applied to a range of health and welfare professions.
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