The experience of illness and old age has accompanied the human being forever. In reaction to it, various institutions were created with time, which were to aid or replace the caring for the elderly and the sick usually conducted within family circles so far. In the conditions of early Medieval Europe, a new impulse came to those actions with Christianity, which extended the warrant of care and attention also onto strangers, primarily onto pilgrims. For that reason a special institution was established (the xenodochium), which served pilgrims at first and later also the sick and the elderly. Similar solutions were implemented in lands inhabited by the followers of Islam as well. In those circles the traditions ofGreek medicine were being continued, too. In the realities of the Medieval Europe the hospital (hospitale) served more as a care centre for the elderly rather than for treating the sick. At the same time, medicine was one of the sciences studied at the recently created universities and the position of a physician enjoyed great prestige. Moreover, new orders specialising in caring for pilgrims and hospitality were established (alongside the great orders of knights also the Hospitallers of the Holy Spirit or the Hospital Brothers of St. Anthony). In modern Europe functioning of hospitals was greatly influenced by confession divisions, which receded only as late as in the second half of the 19th century with the emergence of state health care. Another stage of the development of hospitality in Europe was the introduction public health care systems in highly developed countries, which worked with various outcomes. Simultaneously, the medical knowledge and educating physicians was progressing within the framework of universities and clinical hospitals connected with them.
Functioning of hospitals as institutions (the administration, buildings, methods of financing them), health care in sickness and over the elderly (conditions in hospital, approaches towards the sick), social position and systems of education of physicians, together with the relationship between the development of medicine and the institution of hospital as well as the emergence of state health care services, constitute only the selected issues which we want to bring up in the next volume of the periodical "Studia Historica Gedanensia" – "From hospitale to Hospital".
The invitation to undertake the suggested subjects and to send in works (articles, source materials, reviews) is extended to all, historians researching all historical epochs, from antiquity to modernity, as well as to representatives of other disciplines, including medicine, economy, law or sociology.
Topic suggestions are to be sent to dr. hab. Rafał Kubicki, prof. UG, until the end of October 2018, whereas the finished text are to be submitted until the end of 2018.
Contact: dr hab. Rafał Kubicki, prof. UG firstname.lastname@example.org
The year volume of "Studia Historica Gedanensia" is featured in the so-called "B list" of periodicals awarded points by the Polish Ministry of Science and Higher Education and is graded at 8 points.
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