Keynote lecture by Prof. Candy Gunther Brown, Ph.D.
Why Alternative and Religious Healing is More Mainstream in America than in Europe
Between the 1960s and 2010s, alternative and religious healing practices entered the American cultural mainstream — whereas such practices remain more controversial and less studied in Europe. This talk elucidates the cultural processes through which healing practices that most American medical doctors and religious practitioners once rejected as “quackery” or “idolatry” have been embraced as cutting-edge “integrative” medicine —without needing to garner rigorous evidence of efficacy or shed religious foundations. The talk considers differences between the American and European cultural and religious situations, and suggests directions for future research.