Western Medical Thought From Antiquity To The Middle Ages

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Overview

A landmark work, this history of medical thought from antiquity through the Middle Ages reconstructs the slow transformations and sudden changes in theory and practice that marked the birth and early development of Western medicine.

Editor Mirko Grmek and his contributors adopt a synthetic, cross-disciplinary approach that conveys a complete and varied vision of our medical past, with attention to cultural, social, and economic forces as they have affected the historical flow of knowledge and the practice of medicine. The various chapters by an international group of scholars, isolate key ideas behind the history of medicine in the West: charity and aid for the sick; medical scholasticism; the concept of disease; intervention with surgery or drugs; and the regimen of health. Throughout, they highlight the links between socioeconomics in general, with a focus on the physician, and the scientific ideas, beliefs, and techniques behind prevailing medical practices. The result is a multifaceted history, unparalleled in its scope, of the myriad influences on the development of medical thought, and of the impact of that thought on other branches of knowledge and on human behavior across the centuries.

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Editorial Reviews

New Scientist
[The book's] essays, relating early Western medicine to the surrounding thought and culture, were originally published in Italian. But thanks to translator Anthony Shugaar they retain all their clarity and energy.
Choice

This book is a compilation of 12 monographs on classical and medieval medicine by 12 experts. Grmek's editing and especially Shugaar's translation provide the English-speaking reader with the best in-depth coverage of this field yet provided. Unlike other joint efforts that sometimes lack unity of theme or depth of knowledge, these essays can be read individually to introduce or brush up on a topic, or they can be read as a whole...They are complementary, not competitive.
— T. P. Gariepy

Virginia Quarterly Review
Here we have a number of lively and interesting discussions, based on sound methodology, ranging from the time of Hippocrates to the Black Death, dealing with the important subjects of disease, drugs, surgery, and hygiene, the whole accompanied by an extensive bibliography of primary and secondary sources."
Choice - T. P. Gariepy
This book is a compilation of 12 monographs on classical and medieval medicine by 12 experts. Grmek's editing and especially Shugaar's translation provide the English-speaking reader with the best in-depth coverage of this field yet provided. Unlike other joint efforts that sometimes lack unity of theme or depth of knowledge, these essays can be read individually to introduce or brush up on a topic, or they can be read as a whole...They are complementary, not competitive.
Katharine Park
There is no equivalent survey of ancient and medieval medical writing in Europe and the Mediterranean world. The contributors are among the most respected historians in the field.
Choice
This book is a compilation of 12 monographs on classical and medieval medicine by 12 experts. Grmek's editing and especially Shugaar's translation provide the English-speaking reader with the best in-depth coverage of this field yet provided. Unlike other joint efforts that sometimes lack unity of theme or depth of knowledge, these essays can be read individually to introduce or brush up on a topic, or they can be read as a whole...They are complementary, not competitive.
— T. P. Gariepy
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780674007956
  • Publisher: Harvard University Press
  • Publication date: 5/3/2002
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 496
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Mirko D. Grmek is Director of Studies at the École Practique des Hautes Études, Sorbonne, Paris. He is the author of History of AIDS: The Emergence and Origin of a Modern Pandemic.
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Table of Contents

Introduction
Mirko D. Grmek

The Birth of Western Medical Art
Jacques Jouanna

Between Knowledge and Practice: Hellenistic Medicine
Mario Vegetti

The Paths of Knowledge: Medicine in the Roman World
Danielle Gourevitch

Reception and Tradition: Medicine in the Byzantine and Arab World
Gotthard Strohmaier

Charity and Aid in Medieval Christian Civilization
Jole Agrimi and Chiara Crisciani

Medical Scholasticism
Danielle Jacquart

The Concept of Disease
Mirko D. Grmek

Therapeutic Strategies: Drugs
Alain Touwaide

Therapeutic Strategies: Surgery
Michael McVaugh

The Regimens of Health
Pedro Gil Sotres

Diseases in Europe: Equilibrium and Breakdown of the Pathocenosis
Jean-Noël Biraben

Notes

Index

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