jeudi 17 mars 2016

La médecine dans la Bible et le Talmud

Medicine in Bible and Talmud

Call for papers

EABS research unit, Leuven (Belgium)
17-20 July 2016 (Markham J. Geller/ Lennart Lehmhaus)


This new research unit is based on two research projects in Berlin in the field of ancient Mesopotamian, Graeco-Roman and Talmudic medicine in comparison ( The group focuses on medical ideas and healing practices in the Bible and Rabbinic sources, as well as in the healing texts and magico-medical passages of the New Testament and in the apocrypha. Furthermore, one may suggest that all these sources adapted and/ or appropriated earlier and contemporary medical knowledge that prevailed in their surroundings, be it from ancient Babylonian, Egyptian, Graeco- Roman or Syriac traditions or knowledge systems. The group will address the complex and often subtler 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 (Listenwissenschaft/ encyclopaedism/ linguocentrism/ exegesis) not only serve as a 'container' or ‘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. Research unit-homepage: CALL FOR PAPERS 2016 - LEUVEN, 17-20 July Papers are invited on the theme of the "Concepts of Disease(s) in traditions of (Late) Antiquity", extending from bi-blical and apocryphal texts, into later Jewish, rabbinic and early Christian contexts. We are especially interested in presentations on rabbinic-talmudic traditions against the foil of their literary and socio-cultural background(s). However, also discussions of earlier discourses in the Bible and the post-biblical (Second Temple) literature as well as of those medical traditions in later medieval are most welcome, as far as they relate to the transfer of knowledge on different paths. The panel organisers aim to offer a comparative perspective by keeping an eye on the embeddedness of such medical discourses on illness and disease in their surrounding cultures. This contextualization starts with ancient Babylonian and other Near Eastern cultures and their highly developed medical systems. However, also the impact of Greco-Roman medical theory and practice and Early Christian approaches as well as later Byzantine, Syriac and Muslim-Arabic appropriations and inventions should be considered. Such a perspective will allow for assessing Talmudic medical ideas of disease within a broader history of medicine and to determine their particular Jewishness. Furthermore, the synchronic and diachronic structure of the panel is intended to highlight various processes of transmission, transfer, rejection, modification and invention of the issues under discussion. While addressing the interaction between various medical discourses, papers may consider different strategies (borrowing/ camouflage/ negation etc.) which may relate to questions of the transcultural history of science(s) and knowledge in (Late) Antiquity. POSSIBLE TOPICS (not meant exclusively) might be: – Biblical medicine and illness: sacred fiction or factual practices? – Which disease concepts can be found in the so-called scientific literature in the Second Temple period (Apocrypha, Apocalyptic texts like Enoch etc., Qumran). – Ancient Babylonian and other Near Eastern ideas about illness and their permutations in biblical and rabbinic medical traditions. – Talmudic medicine and approaches to illness in their Greco-Roman and Iranian-Persian contexts. – The figure of the healer and his role regarding different diseases in Jewish and neighboring traditions. – The distinction between physical and mental illness and/ or impairment in biblical, later Jewish, and Talmudic discourse within the context of their varying cultural contexts, with a special regard to ideas of mental illness and possession in early Christian (NT/ patristic and monastic literature) and Byzantine traditions. – How did theories or concepts of disease affect more practical approaches to the patient in the periods under discussion? Alongside the 2016-focus on
"Concepts of Disease(s) in traditions of (Late) Antiquity"
we invite also other contributions which fall into the scope of our group as outlined above. Please send your proposals to both chairs: Abstracts should be submitted also via a free account at the EABS website's application system: Invited panelists who are no EABS members then will need to join EABS to present a paper.

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