This website uses cookies to understand how you use the website and to improve your experience. By continuing to use the website, you accept the University of New England’s use of cookies and similar technologies. To learn more about our use of cookies and how to manage your browser cookie settings, please review our Privacy Notice.


Balance: The Narrative of Health and Disease in Ancient Greece

Seminar Center for Global Humanities Lecture/Seminar Series

Jennifer Clarke Kosak

Associate Professor and Chair of Classics, Bowdoin College

Disease has many stories, some told by individual sufferers, others by health care practitioners and researchers, and yet others by historians of medicine. This seminar examines disease stories found in ancient Greek literature and discusses how specific cultural expectations and attitudes influenced the ways these stories were told.


Jennifer Clarke Kosak received her Ph.D. in Classical Philology from the University of Michigan and her B.A. from Harvard-Radcliffe. She has research interests in the areas of ancient Greek medicine, ancient Greek theater, gender studies (particularly masculinity) and intellectual history. Her book, Heroic Measures: Hippocratic Medicine in the Making of Euripidean Tragedy (2004), argues that Greek tragedy and Greek medical writing draw upon a common stock of ideas to construct their views on human nature and the processes of disease and treatment. She has also written articles that demonstrate the importance of Greek medical thought for understanding other authors and areas of classical Greek culture. Currently, she is writing a book on masculinity and medicine in ancient Greece.

Assigned Reading

G. E. R. Lloyd, In the Grip of Disease: Studies in the Greek Imagination (Oxford University Press, 2004)


A reception will be held at 5pm at the UNE Art Gallery


Center for Global Humanities


(207) 221-4335

6:00 PM
WCHP Lecture Hall

Portland Campus

Free and open to the public