Detail of the cover of a 1585 edition of Chirvrgia Magna, by Gvidonis de Gavliaco (Guy de Chauliac)

See me at the CSHPS-SCHPS 2020 annual meeting

Update: This conference has been cancelled due to covid-19.

The Canadian Society for the History and Philosophy of Science’s (CSHPS) annual meeting will take place during Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences 2020.

I will present my paper “Maladies of the Matrix: On the Treatment of Women in Guy de Chauliac’s Chirurgia Magna.”

Early medieval medicine and natural philosophy was largely derived from ancient Greek texts interpreted and translated by Muslim scholars and in this way reentered the west. Medieval physiology relied heavily on philosophy and theology for explanations of how and why bodies came to be constructed in the way they were, and often deferred to the authority of older sources. However, by the thirteenth century universities were becoming more formalized institutions, and there was a demand for a greater degree of professionalization among medical practitioners. Surgeons who studied at universities gained practical knowledge of human anatomy, as well as psychological techniques to better interact with their patients, including women, who were understood to have diseases that were quite different from those a man might encounter, particularly in regards to their euphemistically termed “matrix.”

CSHPS-SCHPS 2020 annual meeting poster

The Canadian Society for the History and Philosophy of Science’s annual meeting will take place from from 30 May through 1 June 2020 at Western University in London, Ontario.

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