Boundary disputes-

Boundary - ‘A limit of something abstract, especially a subject or sphere of activity’ Oxford English dictionary

Dispute- noun – ‘a disagreement or argument’

Verb- ‘compete for; strive to win’

Thus taking a boundary dispute to mean- a competition/argument over the limits of a set activity.

Within the apparently unified scientific community there appears to be underlying boundary disputes furthered by the growing the professionalisation and specialisation of scientific study. Considerations for such disputes can be found in S.Sturdy’s work on the tensions between the medical field and the pursuit of science, when scientists try and assert their knowledge within the medical practitioners’ jurisdiction. (Sturdy, S. 'Looking for Trouble: Medical Science and Clinical Practice in the Historiography of Modern Medicine', Social History of Medicine, 24 (2011), 739-57.) However, Sturdy’s work implies that tensions between the two have been over stated.

Further conflict within the ‘sphere of professional science’ can be found in R. Barton’s work which considers the hierarchy within the scientific field, the primary labels are amateur and professional, with amateurs normally being unable to break free from their boundaries due to financial deprivation.

Between science and the supernatural there appear to be boundary disputes as to what can be examined with the consideration of religion or science, which field has the right to consider what aspects of the human body. These are evident in works from both fields, such as the dispute caused by the concept of naturalism - it challenged the Church’s doctrines of man’s creation. But is this case similar to Sturdy’s belief; is there too much focus on disagreements and not enough on the work achieved together?

There are also boundary disputes within the Spiritualism movement between those who believed in materialism and those who believed in dualism.