The Concept of Mania in Greek Medical and Philosophical Literature

Luigia Melillo Corleto


Coverage of the concept of mania in late archaic Greek culture displays a clear difference between its use in medical and philosophical works. Medical literature uses the terms    and  to describe mania, with the condition seen largely associated with physical illness. Specific treatment for this attered psychic state is not advanced. The philosophical view sees mania as a divine fooly and thus possessing positive as well as negative aspects. Plato identifies four types of mania and treatment is closely associated with the divinity seen as responsible for that particular type. The radical rationalism found in the medical literature is a counterpoint to moderation as shown by Plato with his interest on regulations of society. 


Key words: Mania - Greek medical literature - Greek philosophical literature -Plato - Hippocrates 

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