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Document Details :

Title: Jalons pour une histoire de la compassio
Subtitle: Controverses philosophiques et médicales sur la contagion du bâillement au XIVe siècle
Author(s): DELAURENTI, Béatrice
Journal: Recherches de Théologie et Philosophie Médiévales
Volume: 79    Issue: 1   Date: 2012   
Pages: 149-194
DOI: 10.2143/RTPM.79.1.2168981

Abstract :
The study of philosophical and medical debates on the contagiousness of yawning sheds some light on the history of the notion of contagion in medieval Europe. This topic gave rise to doctrinal developments concerning the medieval concept of compassio, that is to say, the involuntary imitation of the behavior of others. In this article, the theory of the contagiousness of yawning is studied in six commentaries on the Aristotelian Problemata, section VII, that were written between 1310 and 1380. The contagiousness of yawning, which was an interesting problem for both physicians and philosophers, is connected with questions concerning actio in distantia and the relation between human beings and nature.

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