"The medical establishment has become a major threat to health." With this opening assertion, Ivan Illich - one of the most brilliant social critics of our time - launches a devastating analysis into "iatrogenesis" (doctor-made illness), examining what medicine really does, as opposed to the myth that has been built around it. "Medical Nemesis" poses some basic questions not only about the medical profession but about the direction of modern society and its dependence upon a maintenance system that is categorically robbing us of power, money, dignity - even life itself. The inescapable agencies of modern medicine’s downfall and why it should return to the Church.

Ivan Illich ( 4 September 1926 – 2 December 2002) was an Austrian philosopher, Roman Catholic priest, and "maverick social critic" of the institutions of contemporary Western culture and their effects on the provenance and practice of education, medicine, work, energy use, transportation, and economic development.