How can Feminist Theories of Evidence Assist Clinical Reasoning and Decision-Making?

Social Epistemology (TBA):1-28 (2013)
Download Edit this record How to cite View on PhilPapers
While most of healthcare research and practice fully endorses evidence-based healthcare, a minority view borrows popular themes from philosophy of science like underdetermination and value-ladenness to question the legitimacy of the evidence-based movement’s philosophical underpinnings. While the feminist origins go unacknowledged, those critics adopt a feminist reading of the “gap argument” to challenge the perceived objectivism of evidence-based practice. From there, the critics seem to despair over the “subjective elements” that values introduce to clinical reasoning, demonstrating that they do not subscribe to feminist science studies’ normative program——where contextual values can enable good science and justified decisions. In this paper, I investigate why it is that the critics of evidence-based medicine adopt feminist science’s characterization of the problem but resist the productive solutions offered by those same theorists. I suggest that the common feminist empiricist appeal to idealized epistemic communities is impractical for those working within the current biomedical context and instead offer an alternate stream of feminist research into the empirical content of values (found in the work of Elizabeth Anderson and Sharyn Clough) as a more helpful recourse for facilitating the important task of legitimate and justified clinical decision-making. I use a case study on clinical decision-making to illustrate the fruitfulness of the latter feminist empiricist framework. See response by Sharyn Clough: See reply by Maya Goldenberg:
PhilPapers/Archive ID
Revision history
Archival date: 2013-08-26
View upload history
References found in this work BETA

View all 51 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA
Situating Feminist Epistemology.Ashton, Natalie Alana & McKenna, Robin

Add more citations

Added to PP index

Total views
678 ( #4,485 of 45,694 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
73 ( #9,280 of 45,694 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Downloads since first upload
This graph includes both downloads from PhilArchive and clicks to external links.