Occupational therapy’s history is explored to identify some implications for its directions in the 21st century. The profession was founded upon visionary ideas about the nature of human beings and their vital need for activity. Occupational therapy will make a significant contribution to society if it (a) seeks and applies an epistemology consistent with studying human purposes, (b) fosters its optimistic view of human nature, and (c) clarifies its relationship to medicine and other disciplines.

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