Kazem Sadegh-Zadeh     Philosophy of Medicine     HAPM





All issues, methods, concepts, logics, and theories discussed in the preceding seven parts of the book and the results achieved enable us to make a final judgment about some focal issues of scientific inquiry in general, and of the scientific nature or status of medicine and its relationship to the so-called rationality, in particular. To this end, a detailed analysis is undertaken of the question What is science? A general concept of science, formally a ten-place predicate, is proposed that makes possible to precisely distinguish between three types of science: theoretical science, practical science, and deontic science. It is shown that medicine comprises all of these three types. So medicine is theoretical science, practical science, and deontic science at the same time. But the scientificity of medicine does not imply that it is a rational discipline because the question arises what is rationality? A thorough discussion of this issue demonstrates that also rationality is relative to several factors the most basic and important one of them being the logic that is applied in reasoning. Due to the plurality of logics we have at our disposal, different types of rationality will emerge depending on which logic we use to the effect that some reasoning that appears rational from the perspective of logic A will not be rational from the perspective of another logic B. On the basis of this example, and of many other ones, a general view of relativism is developed that finally yields a general, precise, and robust concept of perspectivism. This concept means that not only an observation is relative to the perspective from which it is made, but also scientific knowledge and scientific theories, also in medicine, are relative to perspectives. This completes Part VIII consisting of 3 chapters and 32 pages.

A detailed, formal and philosophical introduction to several systems of modern (classical, modal, non-classical, probability, and fuzzy) logic given in the final Part IX closes The Handbook. This part on Logical Fundamentals used in the book consits of six chapters and 231 pages.