37th Meeting of the Ancient Medicine Interdisciplinary Working Group

Body and the Medicine in the Ancient World

In today´s perspective, the human body is perceived not only in its biological, but also in its social context and as historians of ancient medicine, we are open to views about its condition and value as well as culturally influenced views about its shape and function. As well as this, the body and its optimisation (genetic, operative, dietary) and aesthetics, is the subject of much discussion in the media, in the context of technical innovations and the development of a pluralistic society.

At this year’s workshop, we will examine the sources from the ancient world to look at the themes of "norm" body, old body, stigmatised body and bodies of gods and heroes by referring to the following questions:

(a) How did doctors and writers refer to the healthy body?

(b) What is the definition of a healthy body in different ancient medical traditions from the Orient to Egypt and from earliest times to late antiquity?

(c) Which (not always ideal) body images are transmitted by gods and heroes and how is this connected to the people?

(d) Are there physical disabilities or externally visible aspects deviant from the norm that stigmatise people in Egyptian, Mesopotamian, Greek, Roman, Jewish or Early Christian society?

(e) Is the value of a body measurable? For instance by its performance and functioning?

(f) Were people once obliged to cooperate with a healer to sustain their (healthy) body? What right of self-determination over their body has the individual?


Saturday, 1 Juli 2017

15:00 Begrüßung Prof. Dr. Tanja Pommerening &
Prof. Dr. Livia Prüll
15:10 Einführung in das Tagungsthema Prof. Dr. Marietta Horster
15:10-16:20 Making sense of the body
Prof. Dr. Philip van der Eijk
- Pause -
Session 1: Körper I
Chair: Prof. Dr. Livia Prüll (Mainz)
16:50-17:20 Zur Kenntnis operativer Geschlechts-korrekturen in der Medizin des Hellenismus Dr. med. Malte Stoffregen
17:20-17:50 Die Zurichtung des Körpers – „Organiké“ und „Organikoí“: orthopädische Maschinen im antiken Alexandria PD Dr. med. Mathias Witt, M.A.
17:50-18:20 Behinderte Götter und Menschen in der griechisch-archaischen Mythologie und Gesellschaft Prof. Dr. Josef N. Neumann
19:30 Gemeinsames Abendessen


Sunday, 2 July 2017

Session 2: Körper II
Chair: Prof. Dr. Tanja Pommerening (Mainz)
09:30-10:05 Healthy body (as vessel for the soul) in the medieval Islamicate world Shahrzad Irannejad, Pharm.D.
10:05-10:35 Überlegungen zu den Konzepten von Fleisch (äg. jwf) als Heilmittel sowie als Metapher für den menschlichen Körper im Alten Ägypten Rebekka Pabst, B.A.
10:35-11:05 Two late Byzantine collections of recipes: The cases of Nikephoros Blemmydes and Gregory Chioniades Dr. Petros Bouras-Vallianatos
- Pause -
Session 3: Offene Themen
Chair: Prof. Dr. Marietta Horster
11:35-12:05 Gallensteine in den medizinischen Fachschriften der Antike Dr. des. Frank Ursin, M.A.
12:05-12:35 Philosophical protreptic in Galen’s Exhortation to the Study of Medicine Dr. Sophia Xenophontos
12:35-13:05 Krankenversorgung außerhalb des römischen Militärs – Zivile valetudinaria Dr. med. dent. Siegwart Peters
Session 4: Projektberichte
Chair: Prof. Dr. Tanja Pommerening
13:05-13:35 The Digital Corpus of Greek Medical Papyri: An appraisal Dr. Nicola Reggiani, Dr. Isabella Bonati, Francesca Bertonazzi, M.A.
after 13:35 You may join the other participants for lunch
The end of the meeting


Organizers: Prof. Dr. Marietta Horster, Prof. Dr. Tanja Pommerening, Prof. Dr. Livia Prüll

Place: Institut für Geschichte, Theorie und Ethik der Medizin, Am Pulverturm 13, 55131 Mainz, Hörsaal U 1125 im Untergeschoß

The workshop is certified by the Landesapothekerkammer Rheinland Pfalz with 11 and by the Landesärztekammer Rheinhessen with 9 education points.

The workshop is open to the public.
For effective planning and coordination, we kindly ask you to fill out our registration form and send it back not later than June 11, 2017.