130 China Review International: Vol. 11, No. 1, Spring 2004 Shigehisa Kuriyama. The Expressiveness of the Body and the Divergence of Greek and Chinese Medicine. New York: Zone Books, 2002. 340 pp. Hardcover $32.00, isbn 0942299884. Paperback $18.00, isbn 0942299881. The Expressiveness of the Body by Shigehisa Kuriyama is a magnificent and provocative work that explores the historical construction of the radically different conceptions of the human body in the medical traditions of classical Greece and early China. In the second part of the title Kuriyama specifies this difference as a "divergence" because, as he shows in many places, the earliest demonstrations of the medical conceptions of the human body in both traditions shared many similar points, for example the perceived benefits of bloodletting and the view of wind as a source of illness. On the other hand, in his preface Kuriyama provides a stark visual contrast between the fully developed conceptions of the body from each tradition by reproducing two drawings, the first from the fourteenth-century Chinese acupuncturist Hua Shou and the second from the sixteenth-century European anatomist Vesalius. The Chinese figure is defined by the locations of its acupuncture points, the European by its anatomical musculature.
China Review International – University of Hawai'I Press
Published: Jan 18, 2004
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