Medicine in Bible and Talmud
The group focuses on medical ideas and healing practices in the Bible and Rabbinic sources, as well as in closely related or contemporary traditions (e.g. New Testament, Qumranic texts, apocryphal traditions, Targum, early Christian texts). The group will address the complex and often subtle processes of reception, adaptation and production of (secular or scientific) medical knowledge in the transformative period of (Late) Antiquity. Particular attention will be paid also to the interplay between form and content. In which way did specific hermeneutics and forms of representation not only serve as a ‘channel’ for transmission or seal for authority but also as a method for acquiring knowledge? An analysis of these specific ways of appropriation of medical ideas and practices will help to grasp the particular cultural or religious (Mesopotamian, Jewish, Christian, Graeco-Roman) character of the epistemologies and the knowledge generated through these exchanges.
Contributors should aim at offering a comparative perspective by keeping an eye on the embeddedness of medical discourses in their surrounding cultures( ancient Babylonian, Near Eastern, Graeco-Roman, Persian, Byzantine/Syriac or early Islamicate traditions). Such a perspective will allow for assessing Jewish and Talmudic medical knowledge within a broader history of ancient knowledge cultures and helps to determine their distinct epistemologies or particular Jewishness. Furthermore, a synchronic and diachronic perspective enhances to highlight various processes of transmission, transfer, rejection, modification and invention of the issues under discussion. While addressing the interaction between various medical discourses, the group will consider different strategies (borrowing/ camouflage/ negation etc.) which may relate to still unsolved questions in the transcultural history of science(s) and knowledge in (Late) Antiquity.
Medicine, Magic, Encyclopaedia, Ancient Science, Diagnosis
Warsaw 2019 Call for Papers
We welcome contributions on ancient medicine and knowledge that fall into the general scope of our program unit as outlined above.
For the next meeting in Warsaw 2019 we invite proposals for presentations or for pre-organized panel-sessions on the theme “Even the best among doctors is destined for Gehenna/Hell- ancient medical expertise and healing experts”. The thematic sessions will deal with questions of experts and expertise in various medical and religious cultures of (Late) Antiquity, ideally from a comparative perspective….