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This course will examine the historical development of western medicine in relation to societies, politics and culture. We shall address topics such as changing views of the body and its functions, the social and cultural meaning of disease, the place of patients and medical practitioners in the world of healing and the role of religion and magic in this world. We will also explore the bearings medical pursuits had on the creation and substantiation of notions of gender, investigate how practitioners sought to gain and maintain authority over knowledge, institutions and patients, and examine the place of visual and material culture in the production and dissemination of medical knowledge. Although the course will focus on the so-called ‘Western’ medicine, we shall consider points of contact and encounters between Western and non-Western medical worlds.


Course Information

  • Course Code: HPS2004H
  • Course Location: NF205
  • Course Delivery: On Campus
  • Course Credits: 0.5 cc