Hippocrates Strength Of Culture

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Culture and nature can together define the strengths and weaknesses of people within specific regions. In Airs, Waters, Places, Hippocrates, “the father of modern medicine,” illustrates the close relationship between nomos (nature) and physis (culture). Through in-depth scientific theories and thoughtful research, Hippocrates creates connections on how a culture is developed through varying factors of the environment. He supports his claims with examples from different regions around the world, and is even able to make a connection between the nomos and different forms of government. That being said, there is also a lack of clarity in some instances because he did not deeply study the genetic makeup of humans. Impressively, this did not…show more content…
As stated in section 23, “A variable climate produces a nature which is coupled with a fierce, hot-headed and discordant temperament, for frequent fears cause a fierce attitude of mind whereas quietness and calm dull the wits” (Hippocrates 109). The previous claim illustrates that through the study of one’s environment, that the strength and characteristics of a culture will directly be developed. He points out that with an ever-changing environment that Europeans actually are more courageous than inhabitants in Asia based upon their ability to adapt to a difficult surrounding. This empowers Europeans to be more “warlike” because Asiatics are not being tested physically and therefore do not have work through difficult situations. With an understanding of the characteristics of the population of a region, Hippocrates is then able to make conclusions in terms of the study of variation in weather has on the strength and type of…show more content…
As pointed out earlier, a government has the power to affect the mentality of a physis. As in the example of the Macrocephalis, the length of the head has been changed and eventually becomes the usual: “The characteristic was thus acquired at first by artificial means, but, as time passed, it became an inherited characteristic and the practice was no longer necessary” (Hippocrates 103). In this quote, Hippocrates states how a developed trait is completely independent from climatic determinism, and instead implies that genetic improvement also plays a role in the direct relationship between nature and culture. This is a new argument that had not been mentioned earlier in the literature, and represents how Hippocrates may understand that there are lurking variables outside of the impact of a region’s
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