In a world where medicine and the life sciences increasingly shape how we understand and imagine who we are and the milieu we live in, what can we learn from the early history of these fields of inquiry? And what does their modern study bring to our grasp of ancient and medieval cultures? Over the past few decades, Heinrich von Staden has played a pioneering role in bridging past and present and in putting Greco-Roman science and medicine into dialogue with the history and philosophy of science, the natural sciences, cultural studies, and contemporary intellectual culture. “Vital Traditions” will celebrate Heinrich’s achievements and capitalize on the intellectual momentum he has created.


At Princeton University: David A. Gardner ’69 Magic Project (Council of the Humanities), Department of Anthropology, Department of Art & Archaeology, Department of Classics, Department of Comparative Literature, Department of History, Department of Philosophy, Stanley J. Seeger ’52 Center for Hellenic Studies, University Center for Human Values, Program in the Ancient World, Program in History of Science, Interdisciplinary Doctoral Program in the Humanities

At Yale University: Department of Classics, Program in the History of Science and Medicine, Section of the History of Medicine (Yale School of Medicine)

Friday 19 April

morning session 9:30–12:30

Opening Remarks


Princeton University


Princeton University

The Prospects for Ancient Science: A Personal View

g. e. r. lloyd 

University of Cambridge

christian wildberg Chair

Princeton University

Insides, Outsides: Imagining Sexual Difference from
Herophilus to the “Knit Your Own Uterus” Movement

helen king 

Open University

peter brooks Chair

Princeton University

afternoon session 2:00–5:30

The Hippocratic Oath(s) and Their Relevance
to Contemporary Bioethics

jacques jouanna 

Université de la Sorbonne–Paris IV

andrew ford Chair

Princeton University

Systematicity in the Texts of Ancient Greek
Medicine and Science

markus asper 

Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin

angela n. h. creager Chair

Princeton University

Life and Intense Beauty

shigehisa kuriyama 

Harvard University

caroline bynum Chair

Institute for Advanced Study

Reception   5:30–7:00



morning session 10:00–12:30

Anatomy as Religion:
Viscera and Votives in Republican Italy

rebecca flemming 

University of Cambridge

harriet flower Chair

Princeton University

Making Sense of the Body

philip van der eijk 

Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin

véronique boudon-millot Chair

Université de la Sorbonne–Paris IV

afternoon session 2:00–5:00

Galen, from Windbag to World Author, and Beyond

vivian nutton 

University College London

daniel j. kevles Chair

Yale University

Aretaeus: Ekphrasis and Empathy

maud gleason 

Stanford University

glen bowersock Chair

Institute for Advanced Study

Closing Remarks

heinrich von staden 

Institute for Advanced Study   


There is no registration fee, but advance registration for the conference is strongly encouraged. Space is limited. Reservations will be accepted in the order they are received. Please register by 31 March 2013. Late registration and walk-ins will be accepted, space permitting.

To register, please contact:
Lucy Weise
Conference & Event Services
71 University Place
Princeton, NJ 08544-2088
Telephone: (609) 258-1741
Fax: (609) 258-4656   


The conference will take place in 010 East Pyne Hall. For directions online, please visit:

By rail
New Jersey Transit or Amtrak to Princeton Junction; transfer to shuttle train (“Dinky”) to the Princeton campus. East Pyne is a ­ten-minute walk.

By car
Parking is available in two locations: Lot 10 off  William Street and the University parking garage Lot 3 on Prospect Avenue.

From New York: Take the New Jersey Turnpike to exit 9, follow Route 1 south to Princeton, to the Washington Road (Route 571) exit. Turn right on to Washington Road. Turn right on to Prospect Avenue or William Street for parking.

From Philadelphia: Take I-95 (295) north to Route 1 north. Follow Route 1 to the Washington Road (Route 571) exit. In order to turn left across Route 1, exit to the right and turn left onto Washington Road. Turn right on Prospect Avenue or William Street for parking.


A block of rooms has been reserved at the Marriott Residence Inn, Princeton, Carnegie Center, 3563 US Route 1, Princeton, NJ 08540. For reservations, contact the hotel directly at (609) 799-0550. The group name is Princeton University Vital Traditions Conference. A shuttle will run to the campus from the hotel.      


For further information, please contact Nancy Barthelemy at or (609) 258-3951.


Detail of a drawing by Santiago Ramón y Cajal, Inventory No. 3068. Courtesy Instituto Cajal, Madrid.