The relationship between society and medicine in ancient China is a booming academic field. Fan Ka Wai points to the temporary national Medical Books Revision Bureau 校正醫書局 (jiaozheng yishu ju, from 1057 to 1077) during the Northern Song to discuss the interaction between the government and medicine. The Northern Song was a high point in the history of Chinese medicine, a period when the imperial government made great efforts to promote medical developments. Many scholars explain these developments from the angle of renzheng 仁政 (benevolent governance). Fan's work, however, focuses on the Medical Books Revision Bureau, by which the imperial court facilitated an integration between Confucian knowledge and medical knowledge. The subject of this book is a special group of Confucian officials 儒臣 (ruchen) equipped with medical knowledge gained through education within the family and employed at...

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