Illness as a crisis of meaning: Psycho-spiritual agendas in health care

David Barnard

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Scopus citations


The term "psychosocial" has come to refer to a host of issues in health care. Its wide, indiscriminate usage in referring to almost any non-biophysical aspect of illness obscures or distorts the experience of illness as a "crisis of meaning." The term "psycho-spiritual agenda" is introduced to emphasize the problems of meaning associated with illness, and to avoid the potential reductionism, pathological skew, and interventionist bias of conventional "psychosocial" analyses of the illness experience.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)74-82
Number of pages9
JournalPastoral Psychology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1984
Externally publishedYes


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Social Psychology
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Religious studies

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