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By Patricia A. Baker, Han Nijdam, Karine van 't Land, eds.

ISBN-10: 900421609X

ISBN-13: 9789004216099

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Santing reveals that ultimately the city had to be rid of ‘marginal’ bodies because they were harmful to the public good, but these had to be disposed of properly in the correct spaces to avoid the threat of pollution. On the other hand these bodies could be of use to the public as 18 patricia baker and han nijdam cadavers for the study of medicine. In order to see that the bodies were treated properly different religious brotherhoods took on the roles of enacting the rituals in certain times and places to ensure purity within specific spaces.

At the same time the space itself both reinforces and creates the manner in which people are expected to behave. Overall the theoretical approaches mentioned evince that the relationship between the body and space is significant and can enlighten us about non-verbal expressions of social rules. In this volume a number of papers explicitly discuss how physical structures bounded the ill in particular architectural spheres. It also shows that the boundaries and regulations regarding the ill would change in accordance to where a sick person was treated.

Even within the structures, boundaries seem to exist between those who require short-term or minor treatments and those who might require longer-term and more serious care. It is noted that due to the paucity of architectural recording certain questions cannot be addressed. Yet, Baker explains what methods might be used in the future when further details come to light. The third paper of Irina Metzler’s is also concerned with hospital spaces, though in northern medieval Europe. She is interested in knowing who was permitted to enter these establishments and looks to the classifications of disabled people.

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Medicine and Space. Body, Surroundings and Borders in Antiquity and the Middle Ages by Patricia A. Baker, Han Nijdam, Karine van 't Land, eds.


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