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This is all drivel. God knows best.

In the female version, something resembling a penis and two testicular-like bodies are said to appear above the pudendum. Cutting away the superfluous parts in such a case offers a cure.

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No author in the Arabic commentaries confers this exceptional skill on a female body. The heat that is necessary to complete and perfect the male external genital organs is lacking in females, leaving their genitalia on the inside of the body. This influence also impacts many other attributes and qualities in a body, 25 since heat is essential to all functions in life. It is even easier, he writes, to give birth to male babies than to female babies:. Ursula Weisser noted the longevity of the left-right principle in the history of reproductive science, 31 pointing to a two-fold interpretation; first, the reference to a difference in the sperm produced from the left and right side of the body and, second, an indication of the location in the womb.

Such things have been witnessed many times.

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And if it flows from the right to the left of the womb it would be a womanly man, and if the opposite occured, it would be a manly woman. This accounts for the existence of, for example, bearded women and hermaphrodites. As for active homosexuality, in medieval Arabic literature, as in ancient Greek literature, the desire to penetrate sexually attractive young men or boys is treated as normal, while the desire to be penetrated passive homosexuality is mocked as perverse.

A full exploration of this phenomenon certainly has no place in this short study. This phenomenon occurs in texts from a range of genres and registers, taken from a period of many centuries. As for the mockery they receive in satirical literature, it is not at all clear that this mockery exceeds that received by women. Their sexual organs are the same, as described in the passages cited above, but because of the relative heat and coldness of their bodies, the female organs should tend towards the inside of the body and the male organs to the outside.

For a woman, to have a large clitoris would suggest that she had a warmer body, and consequently a more masculine form. As for female genital mutilation, these discussions, like virtually all of the medical topics discussed in this present study, have roots in ancient Greek texts and practices. Did the mother simply provide a vessel her womb in which the male seed would grow, or did she also contribute female semen to the embryo?

Galen, Arabic

This marked a dramatic departure from the Hippocratic gynaeocological tradition that makes no mention of these organs, discovered by the Greek anatomist, Herophilus b. Aristotle maintained that the body of the female was, unlike that of the male, incapable of concocting semen from blood, lacking the necessary heat. This, said Galen, included the production of a watery semen to incite the woman to sexual pleasure.

Semen is a white moisture that is generated in the fourth digestion and has five properties; first, it is white in colour, as we mentioned, and that is because it is generated in glandular flesh; second, it is of a viscous consistency, and that is due to its strong coction and its coagulation by innate heat, which is why cold starts to dissolve it; third, it has the power to coagulate; fourth, pleasure is produced by it when it flows to a specific part; fifth, its smell resembles the fragrance of pollen.

On this matter there is disagreement between Aristotle and Galen, because Aristotle rejects it and Galen confirms it. The dispute between the two of them on this issue has gone on for a long time and we wrote about it in our commentary on The Generalities of the Canon.

Th4, f. It is a reminder of how strongly the ancient Greek philosophical debates on reproduction and embryology outlined above continued to influence Arab medieval scientists and physicians in their own inquiries into human generation. The existence of this illness is a notion that was also translated from Greek medical works into Arabic. The existence of a sexual emission from women is not in doubt for Ibn al-Quff, who considers its release to be of therapeutic value.

A sneeze benefits these maladies as it jolts and moves the womb, violently dislodging what has adhered to it with the force and the downward movement, helping to expel the foetus. Evil vapours 74 will rise from the trapped menstrual blood or the female seed stagnating in her body, wreaking havoc on her heart and brain. Aphorism 6. According to Hippocrates, normally women do not get gout, nor do eunuchs, who, like women, have colder bodies.

But Ibn al-Quff, echoing Galen, writes that women in his day now do get gout because of their laziness and overindulgence. In this present time, because of the magnitude of the mistakes that they commit to their own harm, gout occurs in some of them without menstruation having stopped.

This [i. For that reason when bedouin and desert women move a lot, they menstruate little. When [menstruation] stops, those waste products are blocked and become pungent due to their blockage, and become corrupted, and some of this flows to the joints of the big toe of the foot so that the aforementioned disease occurs.


Therefore, because this waste product [i. Laziness and bad diet increase this base excretion, which tends to flow down in the body. Their lower parts are big, bigger than their higher [parts], unlike the case in men. The reference to their deficient intelligence is seemingly extraneous to the central argument, and yet reflects the value judgements implicit in the rest of the discussion. Menstrual blood is only useful when the embryo emerges. How can blood like that be said to nourish the body? The nub of the issue was, how could a maligned waste material also provide adequate nutrition for a growing foetus and a newborn baby?

Frequent recourse to this explanatory model is made by the authors of the Arabic commentaries. The idea that a male body might be capable of generating the same nutritive material as a female body nods in the direction of a more syncretic interpretation of physiology where the difference between male and female bodies is not so clear. Women are clearly inferior beings according to these male medical authorities. For example, no woman can use her left hand as well as her right one, mainly due to a lack of innate heat and an overall weakness.

Galen, Arabic | SpringerLink

Galen promotes the female gonads and is intent on assigning them a real job, that of producing a female semen with some agency. Ibn al-Quff is interested in the precise status of the female semen, and after much deliberation, decides that it is not of the same calibre as male seed. Historical Overview 6. Karma The Mahabharata Women in Ancient India 3. The Vedic Period 7. Black on the Upanisads Kautilya and Ashoka The Bhagavad-Gita Frazier on Hinduism 4. The Upanisads 8. Panini's Grammar. Age of the Sutra Vedanta-Sutra Ayurvedic Medicine Nyaya on Reasoning Theories of Time Rise of Skepticism Advaita Vedanta Yoga-Sutra Nyaya on the Mind Naturalism Mimamsa-Sutra Bhartrihari on Language Maas on Yoga Jha and Jha on Nyaya Materialism Mimamsa on Knowledge Clooney on Vedanta Nyaya-Sutra Vaisesika-Sutra Chadha on Mind Freschi on Mimamsa Samkhya Nyaya on Perception Vaisesika on Complexity Aesthetics of Rasa.

Buddhists and Jains Westerhoff on Nagarjuna Vasubandhu and Yogacara Dignaga on Consciousness Indian Influence on Greece Nagarjuna on Emptiness Jain Theory of Standpoints Dignaga on Perception Buddhaghosa Influence on Islam, Europe Nagarjuna on Change Jains on Truth Dignaga's Logic Tantra Later Indian Philosophy Gorisse Jain Epistemology Graham Priest on Buddhism Carpenter on Animals Kit Patrick. Precolonial 1. Introduction 7. Parkinson on Egypt Sokoto Caliphate Philosophy of the Person Professional School 2.

Prehistoric Africa 8. Early Ethiopian Philosophy Diagne on Islam in Africa Communalism Sage Philosophy 3. Ancient Mesopotamia 9. Zera Yacob Oral Philosophy in Africa Divination and Witchcraft Kresse on Anthropology 4. Ancient Egypt Walda Heywat Imbo on Okot p'Bitek Gender in Africa Beyond the Reaction 5. Egyptian Instructions Kiros on Ethiopia Philosophy of Time Nzegwu on Gender Jeffers African Philosophy 6.

Egyptian Narratives Subsaharan Islam God in African Philosophy. Smith on Amo Phillis Wheatley Lemuel Haynes Sancho and Banneker Anton Wilhelm Amo Early Writing in English. Themes: Interviews.


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