Understanding Eating Disorders: Conceptual and Ethical Issues in the Treatment of Anorexia and Bulimia Nervosa

Oxford, GB: Oxford University Press (2005)
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Abstract

Understanding Eating Disorders is an original contribution to the field of healthcare ethics. It develops a new theory concerning the moral basis of eating disorders, and places such disorders for the first time at the centre of philosophical discourse. The book explores the relationship that people have with food and their own body by looking at genetics and neuro-physiology, sociology and family studies, clinical psychology and psychiatry, and frames abnormal eating at the extreme of a spectrum of normal behaviours, directed by moral values. Giordano argues that abnormal eating is not a psycho-pathological phenomenon, but the coherent implementation of ordinary moral values with a long tradition in Western culture. The book also contains a detailed analysis of UK legislation, accompanied by a timely critique of the law on treatment of mental disorders in general and of eating disorders in particular.

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