Inventing Modern Man: Constructions of Mind, Body, and the Individual, 1400-1800 (HIH2137A)

30 credits

You probably think you know what it means to be human – but historically, understandings of the self, body, mind, and soul have varied considerably. This module investigates the various and competing notions of ‘man’ and ‘woman’ from the late middle ages to the enlightenment. You will learn how early modern people believed themselves guided by stars, humours, demons; how they debated free will and man’s natural condition; how they dissected the body, and reformed their souls. Through the prism of man, you will familiarise yourself with developments in early modern scholarship, science, medicine and religion, and reconstruct how historical actors viewed themselves.