The Twentieth Century

  • Richard Colgan


The art of medicine had many proponents in the twentieth century. Three of the most significant teachers are discussed in this chapter. Sir William Osler took the art and teaching of medicine to a new level. He urged physicians to use all of their senses when evaluating patients and to show equanimity and imperturbability when practicing medicine. Osler appreciated that an understanding of the psychosomatic basis of illness was important, and he has been referred to as both the father of internal medicine and psychosomatic medicine. Francis Weld Peabody recognized that with the advancement of scientific discoveries care of the patient was sometimes overlooked. He taught that an interest in humanity was an essential quality of a physician. Both Peabody and Osler recognized students in their earliest clinical years as having an excellent opportunity to learn medicine by the bedside. Albert Schweitzer taught the art of medicine by example, having committed to his life to service. His philosophy of reverence for life was also an argument that he lived his life by, in serving the poor at his jungle hospital in Gabon. Schweitzer taught that there was no greater motto one could follow than to live a life of service.


Medical Student Johns Hopkins Medical Institution Nobel Peace Prize Albert Schweitzer Hospital Great Lesson 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Family & Community MedicineUniversity of Maryland School of MedicineBaltimoreUSA

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