Empathy as a Hermeneutic Practice
More, Ellen S.
Theoretical Medicine. 1996 Sep; 17(3): 243-254.
This essay will argue for the centrality of empathy in the doctor-patient relationship -- as a core of ethically sound, responsible therapeutics. By "empathy," I intend an explicitly hermeneutic practice, informed by a reflexive understanding of patient and self. After providing an overview of the history of the concept of empathy in clinical medicine, I discuss current definitions and the use of Balint groups in residency training as a way to develop empathic competence in novice physicians.
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