Medicine: The Oldest Profession

After digging into the social customs of 250 or more tribes scattered around the world, Anthropologist George Peter Murdock of Yale has concluded that prostitution is not the world's oldest profession. Psychiatry is.

Professor Murdock began by noting that prostitution (as distinct from mere laxity in sexual behavior) does not exist in any primitive society even today, but that the medicine man is universal. And the medicine man in aboriginal cultures is always a magician who practices faith healing. Though he may belong to a tribe skilled in the use of drugs like quinine, he usually leaves the practice of physical medicine...

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