Are Doctors Men of Science – Modern Essays Notes

Q. No. 01: – Are Doctors men of science?


George Bernard Shaw criticizes on doctors that they are not men of science. A layman in street considers that all doctors are men of science. To an ignorant person every captain of trading ship may be a Galileo, organ play a Beethoven, a copyist a Shakespeare. In the same ways every doctor is not a man of science. The doctoring is an art and not a science. The writer gives many points to prove his view point.

Firstly, he says that doctoring is an art of curing illness. He says that doctors are no more scientific than their tailors. A person can know more about science after reading a journal.

Most of the doctors just work to earn their bread. They are not interested in science. The doctors only recommended medicines to their patient. They do not guide them about diet and other precautions.

The doctors have no conception of scientific method. They draw conclusions only from their experience. There is no difference between a doctor and a quack. The doctors sign the death certificate officially, while the quacks sign the death certificate unofficially. The writer gives an example to prove that doctors do not work on their patients scientifically.

Once on of his relative went to doctor for consultation. She was just tired and need a change. But the doctor gave her a stiff doze of digitals. The medicine prescribed only to heart patient. It can be very dangerous to a person who is not a heart patient. In this way he nearly killed her. Luckily she recovered. But after that she did not go to any doctor.

 In light of above discussion we can say that doctors are men of science.

Q. No. 02: – Who are the healers in society according to George Bernard Shaw?


According to the writer, there are other healers in a society that earn as much money as the qualified doctors

These other healers are: –

  1. Quacks: –

These are unregistered doctors who treat the people suffering from any disease. They have some knowledge about all the diseases. They work without any fear.

These are the doctors who are unqualified. They are found in villages and under developed areas of cities. Most of the times they become cause the death of their patients.

  1. Herbalists: –

Herbalists are those, who cure diseases by herbs, bushes and plants. They don’t use English medicines. They are like Eastern Hakims. They also don’t know much about human body and its functions. In case of serious disease they can do nothing about it.

  1. Charmers: –

Charmers also work as healers. They don’t have any medicines. They give charms and spells to the people. The writer called them village witches. They earn lot of money. A lot of people particularly women go to them.

  1. Bonesetters: –

Bonesetters are normally found in rural areas. They claim to be orthopedic healers. These bonesetters earn more than surgeons. Most of the bonesetters adopt these professions because of it is their family profession. Some bonesetters are really good and they cure their patient well.

  1. Grandmothers: –

Grandmothers also included the list of healers. They suggest different remedies for diseases. They also tell the patient about the nature of disease without any test. They also advice to the younger that what to eat and what not to eat.

Q. No. 03: – Is there any difference between a qualified doctor and quack?


In his essay the writer compares a qualified doctor with a quack. According to Shaw there is not much difference between doctors and quacks. The doctors sing the death officially and the quacks sign the death certificate unofficially. It is the business of the types of doctors to kill the patient.

Actually, Shaw is not serious here. He is talking in a humorous manner. Otherwise there is a great difference between a qualified and unqualified medical practitioner. The former is a real doctor whereas the later is a quack.

The main differences between a doctor and a quack are that a doctor has regular knowledge whereas a quack does not know much about his field. A doctor requires his knowledge through books and learning whereas a quack inherits his from his elders.

The doctors and quacks are at war with each other. Both are rivals. Both make as much money as they can.

Still, there is one point where the quacks and doctors become equal to each other. It is the field of death. Both become the cause of death of some their patients. So we cannot fully views. He has overstated his arguments.