Better Than Well: American Medicine Meets the American Dream

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W. W. Norton, Jun 17, 2004 - Health & Fitness - 384 pages
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"Elliott's absorbing account will make readers think again about the ways that science shapes our personal identities."—American Scientist

Americans have always been the world's most anxiously enthusiastic consumers of "enhancement technologies." Prozac, Viagra, and Botox injections are only the latest manifestations of a familiar pattern: enthusiastic adoption, public hand-wringing, an occasional congressional hearing, and calls for self-reliance.

In a brilliant diagnosis of our reactions to self-improvement technologies, Carl Elliott asks questions that illuminate deep currents in the American character: Why do we feel uneasy about these drugs, procedures, and therapies even while we embrace them? Where do we draw the line between self and society? Why do we seek self-realization in ways so heavily influenced by cultural conformity?

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Review: Better Than Well: American Medicine Meets the American Dream

User Review  - Jim - Goodreads

uneven. at its best an insightful and cleverly argued set of essays. at its worst, a disorganized set of poorly researched and poorly defended points that don't cohere into a whole. for lengthy ... Read full review

Review: Better Than Well: American Medicine Meets the American Dream

User Review  - Becca - Goodreads

Interesting premise, but Dr. Elliot has difficulty sticking to the thesis -- the book feels like it is wandering, and overstuffed. I ended up feeling like only the first two chapters actually discussed enhancement technologies at all. Read full review

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About the author (2004)

Carl Elliott is a professor of bioethics and philosophy at the University of Minnesota. He lives in Minneapolis.

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