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Religion of ChiropracticPopulist Healing from the American Heartland$
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Holly Folk

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9781469632797

Published to North Carolina Scholarship Online: January 2018

DOI: 10.5149/northcarolina/9781469632797.001.0001

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History Repeats

History Repeats

(p.191) Chapter Six History Repeats
Religion of Chiropractic

Holly Folk

University of North Carolina Press

The sixth chapter shows how the biography of B. J. Palmer recapitulated situations faced by his father. Endowed with energy and creativity, B. J. Palmer was dispossessed of leadership when a rationalizing profession rejected proprietary models, especially B. J.’s autocratic claims to power. This was symbolized by B. J.’s forceful introduction of the Neurocalometer, a controversial proprietary device that split the membership of the Universal Chiropractors Association. The chapter considers how in later life B. J. Palmer made a “spiritual turn” toward New Thought that imparted an elaborate metaphysics to Chiropractic Philosophy, which endures in the Straight chiropractic movement. When B. J. Palmer died in 1961, his son, David Daniel Palmer, was already managing most of the day-to-day operations at the P.S.C. “Dave” Palmer aligned the soon renamed Palmer College of Chiropractic with mainstream standards of education. The chiropractic profession also normalized its position in American society, with a series of legal and policy victories, including the federal anti-trust lawsuit, Wilk vs. A.M.A.

Keywords:   chiropractic profession, chiropractic philosophy, David Daniel Palmer, Joshua Bartlett Palmer, medical devices, metaphysical spirituality, Neurocalometer, New Thought, Palmer College of Chiropractic, straight chiropractic, Wilk vs. A.M.A

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