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Recording the Root-Cutters and Writing for Midwives: Medical Knowledge Exchanges Between Elite and Non-Elite in the Ancient Mediterranean


Histories of medicine in the ancient Greco-Roman world have traditionally been centered on elite men, despite elite men representing only a small portion of medical practitioners in the ancient world. While recent studies have begin to correct this picture, ideas of folk and elite healing are rarely put into conversation with each other. This thesis aims to balance this view by analyzing the ways in which elite men exchanged knowledge with non-elites, such as women, non-elite men, and peoples of enslaved status from the Hellenistic period to the early Roman Empire on information ranging from pharmacology to gynecology. Ultimately, this thesis demonstrates that these medical histories are in fact entwined, and are not disparate practices as they are often represented.

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