Who turns to acupuncture? The role of mistrust of rationality and individualist success.

Clobert, M., Saroglou, V., & Van Pachterbeke, M. (2015). Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine, 21, 466-471.

In this postmodern society, people tend to abandon conventional medicine for alternative medical systems, such as acupuncture. What are the reasons for this defiance regarding modern rationality and individualist success? Who turns to acupuncture?

This study (n=89) examined whether world views opposed to the predominance of rationality (i.e., mistrust of science, spirituality, paranormal beliefs) and individualist success or consumerism (i.e., power, achievement, and materialism), typically associated with the postmodern era, might explain this attraction toward acupuncture. Participants were recruited through Internet forums interested in complementary and alternative medicine and completed the questionnaire voluntarily.

Attraction to acupuncture related negatively with materialism and achievement as well as positively with spirituality, paranormal beliefs, and mistrust in science. Spirituality, paranormal beliefs, and low achievement were the main predictors of attraction to acupuncture and explained 44% of the variance. The mistrust in science mediated the relationship between spiritual and paranormal beliefs and the attraction toward acupuncture. Low achievement explained the link between low materialism and positive attitudes toward acupuncture.

The general mistrust of our rational and individualist modern society is indeed an important predictor of attraction toward acupuncture, in addition to demographic variables.

Lien vers le PDF : https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26090703