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A politics of the senses: the political role of theKing's-Evil in Richard Wiseman's Severall Chirurgicall Treatises.
Med Humanit. 2019 Sep; 45(3):288-294.MH

Abstract

Written by Richard Wiseman, sergeant-surgeon to King Charles II of England, 'A Treatise on the King's-Evil' within his magnum opus Severall Chirurgicall Treatises (1676), acts as a proto-case series which explores the treatment and cure of 91 patients with the King's-Evil. Working within the confines of the English monarch's ability to cure the disease with their miraculous (or thaumaturgic) touch, Wiseman simultaneously elevates and extends the potential to heal to biomedicine. Wiseman's work on the King's-Evil provides an interesting window through which the political expediency of the monarch's thaumaturgic touch may be explored. The dependence of the thaumaturgic touch on liturgy, theatricality and its inherent political economy in Restoration England allowed Wiseman to appropriate the traditionally monarchical role of healer as his own, by drawing attention to a medical ritual of healing that was as reliant, just as the theatrical ritual of monarchical thaumaturgy was, on symbolic binaries of healer-healed, head-body and touch-sight.

Authors+Show Affiliations

Graduate Entry Medical School, University of Limerick, Limerick, Ireland.Department of Psychiatry, McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.

Pub Type(s)

Historical Article
Journal Article

Language

eng

PubMed ID

29970613

Citation

Komorowski, Adam S., and Sang Ik Song. "A Politics of the Senses: the Political Role of theKing's-Evil in Richard Wiseman's Severall Chirurgicall Treatises." Medical Humanities, vol. 45, no. 3, 2019, pp. 288-294.
Komorowski AS, Song SI. A politics of the senses: the political role of theKing's-Evil in Richard Wiseman's Severall Chirurgicall Treatises. Med Humanit. 2019;45(3):288-294.
Komorowski, A. S., & Song, S. I. (2019). A politics of the senses: the political role of theKing's-Evil in Richard Wiseman's Severall Chirurgicall Treatises. Medical Humanities, 45(3), 288-294. https://doi.org/10.1136/medhum-2017-011390
Komorowski AS, Song SI. A Politics of the Senses: the Political Role of theKing's-Evil in Richard Wiseman's Severall Chirurgicall Treatises. Med Humanit. 2019;45(3):288-294. PubMed PMID: 29970613.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - A politics of the senses: the political role of theKing's-Evil in Richard Wiseman's Severall Chirurgicall Treatises. AU - Komorowski,Adam S, AU - Song,Sang Ik, Y1 - 2018/07/03/ PY - 2018/06/05/accepted PY - 2018/7/5/pubmed PY - 2020/2/11/medline PY - 2018/7/5/entrez KW - infectious diseases KW - literature and medicine KW - medical humanities KW - metaphor KW - physician narratives SP - 288 EP - 294 JF - Medical humanities JO - Med Humanit VL - 45 IS - 3 N2 - Written by Richard Wiseman, sergeant-surgeon to King Charles II of England, 'A Treatise on the King's-Evil' within his magnum opus Severall Chirurgicall Treatises (1676), acts as a proto-case series which explores the treatment and cure of 91 patients with the King's-Evil. Working within the confines of the English monarch's ability to cure the disease with their miraculous (or thaumaturgic) touch, Wiseman simultaneously elevates and extends the potential to heal to biomedicine. Wiseman's work on the King's-Evil provides an interesting window through which the political expediency of the monarch's thaumaturgic touch may be explored. The dependence of the thaumaturgic touch on liturgy, theatricality and its inherent political economy in Restoration England allowed Wiseman to appropriate the traditionally monarchical role of healer as his own, by drawing attention to a medical ritual of healing that was as reliant, just as the theatrical ritual of monarchical thaumaturgy was, on symbolic binaries of healer-healed, head-body and touch-sight. SN - 1473-4265 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/29970613/A_politics_of_the_senses:_the_political_role_of_theKing's_Evil_in_Richard_Wiseman's_Severall_Chirurgicall_Treatises_ L2 - http://mh.bmj.com/cgi/pmidlookup?view=long&pmid=29970613 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -