Major Philosophies That Have Shaped The Nursing Profession

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Nursing has recognized the significance of philosophy, theory, and science to its discipline. Developing each of these areas forms the basis of the nursing profession and assists in guiding practice. Over the decades there have been many philosophies that have shaped nursing and many nurses that have shaped philosophy. Through the efforts of these philosophers, nursing has developed into a respected discipline. The theoretical writings of Drs. Newman, Rogers, Watson, Parse, and Fawcett contributed greatly to the development of nursing science and continue to shape the evolution of nursing. These philosophies and theorists are discussed along with how they apply to the advanced-practice nurse (APRN) and his/her practice. Major Philosophies of Nursing…show more content…
Positivism was embraced by nursing in its early stages because it allowed for the development of its scientific base. Through the study of observable phenomena and facts nursing was able to validate its interventions as therapeutic yet this was detrimental to the holistic view of nursing (Anderson & Whall, 2011). It was thought that positivism would produce unquestionable knowledge and would reflect reality accurately. However, this view may be a sensible method to test cause and effect but it does not address the person from a holistic perspective which is a foundation of nursing practice. Historicism takes into account the social context of the research, recognizing that historical circumstances and the researcher's subjective understanding influence processes. Historicism recognizes that concepts evolve from cultural and social contexts (Hjorland, 2009). Just as a word may have different meanings in different cultures, so may an experience and APRNs need to be cognizant of these social differences when treating

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