Health and Wellbeing in the Ancient World Course - The Open University

General

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Read more about this program on the school's website

Program Description

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Use literary and archaeological evidence to see how ancient Greeks and Romans approached health, well-being, and societal issues.

Understand Greek and Roman approaches to health and well-being

What did being healthy in ancient Rome or Greece look like? How can we tell what well-being meant in ancient times?

This online course will help you investigate these questions, using both literary and archaeological evidence, to uncover details of real-life in ancient societies.

We will divide the body up into organs and systems, using each to explore ancient theories on the structure and function of the human body.

We will discover what ancient societies thought about topics that we still wrestle with today – from the relationship between mind and body to sexuality, ageing, and gender.

What topics will you cover?

  • What is health? Ancient and modern perspectives on health and disease.
  • Medicine, religion, and magic.
  • Using online resources.
  • Vision: theories of sight, approaches to eye disease, including drugs and surgery.
  • Body modifications.
  • Diet and digestion.
  • Human waste: using evidence from toilets and sewers.
  • Conception and birth: theories and practices.
  • Ideal bodies and disabled bodies.
  • The health of the army: recruiting and treating soldiers.

When would you like to start?

Most FutureLearn courses run multiple times. Every run of a course has a set start date but you can join it and work through it after it starts.

  • Available now

What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you‘ll be able to:

  • Develop confidence in exploring a variety of fields that constitute classical studies.
  • Explore and become familiar with open-access resources for classical studies.
  • Develop the ability to critically analyze primary sources.
  • Apply and gain skills in analyzing complex problems based on fragmentary evidence.
  • Engage with contemporary interpretations and scholarly debates.

Who is the course for?

There are no special requirements for this course, but an interest in the ancient world or classics might be useful.

Who will you learn with?

Helen King

I'm Professor Emerita in Classical Studies at The Open University. My main research interests are in the history of medicine and I'm passionate about extending access to learning for everyone.

Eleanor Betts

I have an interest in sensory studies, and how this helps us to understand human experience in the ancient Roman world.

Who developed the course?

The Open University

The Open University (OU) is the largest academic institution in the UK and a world leader in flexible distance learning, with a mission to be open to people, places, methods, and ideas.

Join this course

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Unlimited
$259.99 for one year

Join free and you will get:

  • Access to this course for 8 weeks

Upgrade this course and you will get:

  • Access to this course for as long as it’s on FutureLearn
  • Access to this course’s tests as well as a print and digital Certificate of Achievement once you’re eligible

Buy Unlimited and you will get:

  • Access to this course, and hundreds of other FutureLearn short courses and tests for a year
  • A printable digital Certificate of Achievement on all short courses once you’re eligible
  • The freedom to keep access to any course you've achieved a digital Certificate of Achievement on, for as long as the course exists on FutureLearn
  • The flexibility to complete your choice of short courses in your own time within the year
Last updated Sep 2020

About the School

Learn 100% online with world-class universities and industry experts. Develop your career, learn a new skill, or pursue your hobbies with flexible online courses.

Learn 100% online with world-class universities and industry experts. Develop your career, learn a new skill, or pursue your hobbies with flexible online courses. Read less
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