Medical Imagery, A Certain Ambivalence, Albeit Relative

By François Dagognet

To qualify the specificity of imagery, the author defines medicine as that which externalises, that which brings the inside to the outside, without going via a method that sheds blood. The image pulls of the feat of giving us access to the thing without the thing itself. Thus, it is a matter of learning to see and learning to read. Medicine is a hermeneutics, a science of interpretation of what is before our eyes but which we do not see. Nevertheless, this science of signs ought to be curbed. Because the image is full of ambivalence, its power should be reined in. Through the image, the patient is somewhat depersonalised because the psychological and social distancing factors give way to anatomical correlations. Thereafter, we witness a distancing of the sufferer as a subject of illness. Despite these limits, medical imagery affords an understanding of what happens deep within us, without opening the black box.

  • medical imaging
  • medicine
  • philosophy
  • ethics
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