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Title: Attitudes towards the Use of medicine in Jewish literature from the third and second centuries BCE
Author: Chrysovergi, Maria
ISNI:       0000 0004 2719 1636
Awarding Body: Durham University
Current Institution: Durham University
Date of Award: 2011
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This dissertation examines the attitudes towards the use of medicine in Jewish traditions of the third and second centuries BCE. More specifically, I examine the references to medicine and healing found in the books of 1 Enoch (particularly in the Book of Watchers and the Epistle of Enoch), Tobit, Ben Sira and Jubilees. These texts participate in a debate about the appropriateness of medicine on the one hand, and on the consultation of physicians, on the other. By means of an examination of the multiple manuscript evidence for these texts, I aim to throw light on the earliest strata of the textual tradition. Furthermore, through a discussion on the picture of medicine as presented in Assyria-Babylon, Egypt and Greece—nations alongside which ancient Israel has lived for centuries—I attempt to explore the historico-cultural milieu that lies behind these texts, to offer some fresh insights and to account for the attitudes towards the use of medicine these present. My thesis is that there was no unified approach towards the use of medicine in the Jewish circles of the third and second centuries BCE; the authors of these literary compositions, each in his own unique way, ventured to create afresh medical awareness to his fellow Jews. The existence of opposing views towards medical practice should be understood as different ways to comprehend the multifarious Jewish identity of the Second Temple period. Finally, I suggest that the medical and healing material of the aforementioned writings may be considered as further literary evidence that can contribute to the broader understanding of the manifold medical situations in Hellenistic times.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available