The body has been always an object of imagination, literature, science, philosophy and religion. It is the object of health and disease, birth and death, reward and punishment, and is the vehicle of both the divine and the profane. It is at the center of debates on sexuality, gender identities, race, and politics. In this course, we look at how different views on the body and on sexuality developed and changed in the Middle East throughout the medieval period and how they influenced and were influenced by the religious doctrines, the medical theories, the Islamic law, and the intellectual environment of the Islamic Middle Ages. The course addresses these different views and perceptions as manifested in the religious, philosophical, legal, scientific, and literary production of the period. The recorded lectures are from the Harvard Faculty of Arts and Sciences course History of Science 108.
Faculty: Ahmed Ragab