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What Is Medicine?Western and Eastern Approaches to Healing$
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Paul Unschuld

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780520257658

Published to California Scholarship Online: May 2012

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520257658.001.0001

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Which Model Image for a New Medicine?

Which Model Image for a New Medicine?

53 Which Model Image for a New Medicine?
What Is Medicine?

Paul U. Unschuld

University of California Press

This chapter addresses the issue of transference of philosophical knowledge of nature developed in a polis democracy onto the clerical and feudal structures of the Middle Ages. It also looks at if the thoughts of Aristotle, Plato, or Plotinus can simply be brought into the intellectual world of the French nobility or the awakening bourgeoisie of Italian city-states. Giovanni Pico Della Mirandola, the Italian humanist and philosopher, included Persian, orpheistic, and kabbalistic teachings in his personal syncretism. A convincing model image was missing from the real and ideal structures of society for medicine. Numerous professors and students looked into countless corpses. They carefully cut out heart, lungs, kidneys, tendons, muscles, and whatever else they found. They held it all up and looked at it from all sides and they found that the body itself possesses no power of expression.

Keywords:   polis democracy, Middle Ages, medicine, power of expression, structures of the body

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