medical history

SOURCES & PROBLEMS IN RENAISSANCE MEDICINE. Rewriting the History of European Medicine

This lecture explains the rationale behind the new survey of history in the period, which relies on a wide range of primary and unfamiliar texts drawn from across Europe from Moldavia to Portugal. It considers the consequences for medicine of the opening up of Europe to the wider world, as well as the results of the ever-hardening religious divide, including the fate of Arabic medicine in Iberia.

Deep Cuts: A History of Dissection

The role of the cadaver in medicine is largely hidden away in the modern world, but historically there are many depictions of the act of dissection. This two-week course with Human Remains Conservator Cat Irving will look at the history of dissection, and the role it has played in shaping the medical world. Starting with its brief flowering in ancient Alexandria, it will move through to its flourishing in the Italian states, and later ubiquity in the golden age of medicine, taking in murderers, body snatchers and the 1832 Anatomy Act along the way. It will also consider what depictions of dissection in art reveal – and hide – about this act.

Deep Cuts: A History of Dissection

The role of the cadaver in medicine is largely hidden away in the modern world, but historically there are many depictions of the act of dissection. This two-week course with Human Remains Conservator Cat Irving will look at the history of dissection, and the role it has played in shaping the medical world. Starting with its brief flowering in ancient Alexandria, it will move through to its flourishing in the Italian states, and later ubiquity in the golden age of medicine, taking in murderers, body snatchers and the 1832 Anatomy Act along the way. It will also consider what depictions of dissection in art reveal – and hide – about this act.

The Plague Cycle: The Unending War Between Humanity & Infectious Disease (2021)

For four thousand years, the size and vitality of cities, economies, and empires were heavily determined by infection. Striking humanity in waves, the cycle of plagues set the tempo of civilizational growth and decline, since common response to the threat was exclusion—quarantining the sick or keeping them out. But the unprecedented hygiene and medical revolutions of the past two centuries have allowed humanity to free itself from the hold of epidemic cycles—resulting in an urbanized, globalized, and unimaginably wealthy world.

Healing with Poisons: Potent Medicines in Medieval China (2021)

Healing with Poisons explores the ways physicians, religious devotees, court officials, and laypeople used powerful substances to both treat intractable illnesses and enhance life.

Doctoring the Black Death: Medieval Europe’s Medical Response to Plague (2020)

Dispelling many myths and misconceptions about medicine during the Middle Ages, Aberth shows that plague doctors formulated a unique and far-reaching response as they began to treat plague as a poison, a conception that had far-reaching implications, both in terms of medical treatment and social and cultural responses to the disease in society as a whole.

The Medieval Economy of Salvation: Charity, Commerce, & the Rise of the Hospital (2019)

In The Medieval Economy of Salvation, Adam J. Davis shows how the burgeoning commercial economy of western Europe in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries, alongside an emerging culture of Christian charity, led to the establishment of hundreds of hospitals and leper houses.

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