Academic Year 2018/2019 - 2° Year - Curriculum Educatore nei servizi per l'infanzia
Teaching Staff: Gaetano Maria ARENA
Credit Value: 6
Scientific field: L-ANT/03 - ROMAN HISTORY
Taught classes: 36 hours
Term / Semester:

Learning Objectives

  • outline the history of medicine with the help of many evidences related to the Mediterranean area and distributed over a wide time span from the archaic age to the Late Antiquity; within these chronological coordinates runs the Western medical thought from a magical and superstitious initial phase to a scientific-philosophical terminal phase
  • present the main nosological, diagnostic and therapeutic theories developed by ancient physicians in relation both to individual and epidemic diseases
  • define the spaces and the techniques of intervention of specialists in relation both to the progresses of medical knowledges and to the relationship with the patient, whose figure experienced a heightened interest with the advent of Christianity
  • describe and compare the doctor’s position in the Hellenistic and Roman Imperial age, highlighting similarities and differences from the social, economic and legal points of view

Course Structure

Frontal lessons.

Detailed Course Content

  • sources and research methods: treaties, inscriptions, medical prescriptions in the papyri, archaeological and paleopathological remains
  • “Homeric”, folk and sacerdotal medicine
  • scientific medicine and evolutionary stages: Hippocrates; the Hellenistic age and the medical “sects”; the Imperial period and the figure of Galen; the Late Antiquity
  • health and illness, care and healing: environment and climate; pathologies and diagnosis; epidemics; hygiene and therapies (dietetic, pharmacological and surgical); tools, medicines and places of recovery
  • medical specialties: obstetrics and gynecology; ophthalmology; dentistry; psychiatry
  • the doctor-patient relationship: the professional ethics; legal liability and penalties; the awareness and cooperation of the patient; the triad physician-disease-patient in Christian mentality
  • social and economic status of the doctor: slave, freed and free; court, municipal and military physician; the woman and the practice of medicine

Textbook Information

I. Andorlini-A. Marcone, Medicina, medico e società nel mondo antico, Firenze Le Monnier Università 2004, pp. 1-232.

V. Boudon-Millot, Galeno di Pergamo. Un medico greco a Roma, Roma Carocci Editore 2016, pp. 9-263.

G. Arena-M. Cassia, Marcello di Side. Gli imperatori adottivi e il potere della medicina, Acireale-Roma Bonanno Editore 2016, pp. 139-264.