Regarding policy in chronic traumatic encephalopathy as a transhistoric disorder

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Montana State University - Bozeman, College of Letters & Science


An individual historian can be categorized as belonging to one of two mutually exclusive and exhaustive groups: transhistoricists, those that believe in an object's existence independent of external forces and its ability to remain fundamentally unaffected across time, or culturalists, believing an object's quality or features are dependent on the time and place of its reference. Disease entities have been examined through both perspectives quite fruitfully, expanding the whole of academia's appreciation of the relationship between disease and history. However, chronic traumatic encephalopathy, or CTE, has recently been embroiled in a nationwide National Football League scandal wherein the livelihood of many affected retired players depends on the court's decision in the accompanying tort case to deal out appropriate justice. The nosological understanding of CTE is crucial in the debate - to include all affected players, despite dramatic revisions in our understanding of CTE as a disease across the 20th-century, all parties must recognize CTE, originating in a 1928 case study as 'punch drunk syndrome,' as a timeless entity that has undergone progressive iterations in categorization. In this instance, the culturalist perspective would render the disease's history sufficiently fragmented and prevent a cohesive narrative that includes all manner of diagnostic varieties. Even if antithetical to the present state of the humanities, the transhistoric approach is the only satisfactory perspective to uphold justice in the case of suffering football players.




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