The Partition of the Soul

Philosophers, Relief from a sarcophagus, 2nd century A.D, Inv. Sk 844, Antikensammlung Staatliche Museen zu Berlin

Philosophers, Relief from a sarcophagus, 2nd century A.D, Inv. Sk 844, Antikensammlung Staatliche Museen zu Berlin

On this understanding, the soul is a complex unity of functions. We taste, smell, think and reproduce – different processes and therefore different parts of the soul. So how can the soul as a concurrence of different functions still remain a unity? Does the soul have “parts’, and if so, can they be divided from each other? Are the parts of the soul located in different parts of the body? How do the parts of the soul interact? A broad spectrum of possible answers is presented in ancient and medieval philosophy. The concept of location in the human body is also being studied in connection with ancient medicine in a Topoi project based in the research area “Theory and Science” (D), particularly concerning the theories of Galen, gladiator doctor and physician to the Roman imperial family.

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