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Lecture: Hartwin Brandt (IAS/Princeton — Otto-Friedrich-Universität Bamberg)

Lecture Title: "The Hippocratic Oath in Context: Physician, Patient and Suicide"

Abstract: "The ancient Hippocratic Oath, presumably – after the Bible – the most influential (and intensively discussed) text from Classical Antiquity, still remains enigmatic. It is not mentioned in ancient sources before the first century CE but then – in the first three centuries CE – it occurs in several contexts. The main problems of interpretation will be presented in the talk. The text of the oath is to be contextualized, especially the famous passage regarding the prohibition to give a deadly medication (“pharmakon thanasimon”). It will be argued that the oath is (at least in part) a reaction on the increasing demand for physician-assisted suicide."