Hyunkoo Kim

DPhil Student

St Antony's College

Thesis: A Medicine of Constitutions: Sasang Medicine in Contemporary South Korea

Research: During my doctoral research, I try to answer the following questions: How has a stream of traditional medicine, originally practised in a peripheral part of Korea, become a central aspect of its national medicine? How is its trajectory represented in three different but connected settings, that is, educational, research and clinical settings? What are epistemological challenges during the encounter between traditional and biomedical discourses? As a medicine of constitutions, how does Sasang medicine relate people’s constitutions to their physiologies and diseases during the clinical encounter? Conducting multi-sited fieldwork in educational, research, and clinical settings of Daejeon and Seoul, this thesis deals with issues of standardization and scientization in traditional medicine, by combining a phenomenology of the body with a critical medical anthroplogical study of intersubjectivity in points of view during the clinical encounter.