Advertisement

Visceralism and the Superior Mind in French Medicine and Literature, 1750–1850

  • Anne Vila
Chapter
Part of the Palgrave Studies in Literature, Science and Medicine book series (PLSM)

Abstract

During the French Enlightenment, cerebralists were a key focus of the period’s distinctly visceralist ideas about the mind–body relation. Hygienic works designed for intellectuals frequently focused on treatments for the “delicate stomachs” of scholars, in a model that flourished well into the following century. In the field of mental medicine, hypochondria—understood as both a digestive and a psychic disorder—was redefined as a condition distinct from melancholy and hysteria, and as particularly predominant among male intellectuals. Major literary writers were also keenly interested in the visceral aspects of intellectual endeavor. The chapter provides an overview of those developments, focusing on the place of visceralism in the special “poetic organization” that was attributed to gens de lettres .

Bibliography

  1. Anon. “Hypochondriaque” (passion ou affection). In Denis Diderot and Jean le Rond d’Alembert, Encyclopédie, ou dictionnaire raisonné des sciences, des arts et des métiers. Paris: Chez Briasson [et al.], 1751–65, 17 vols. University of Chicago: ARTFL Encyclopédie Project, Spring 2016. http://encyclopedie.uchicago.edu, edited by Robert Morrissey and Glenn Roe. Vol. 8 (1765), 408–409. Accessed 18 January 2018.
  2. Arnaud, Sabine. On Hysteria: The Invention of a Medical Category Between 1670 and 1820. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2016.Google Scholar
  3. Balzac, Honoré de. “Avant-Propos” to La Comédie humaine [1842]. In La Comédie humaine, 12 vols. Paris: Gallimard, Editions de la Pléiade, 1976–1981. Vol. 1.Google Scholar
  4. ———. Louis Lambert [1832].Google Scholar
  5. ———. “Traité des excitants modernes” [1839]. In La Comédie humaine. Vol. 12.Google Scholar
  6. ———. “Les Martyrs Ignorés” [1847]. In La Comédie des Ténèbres. Paris: Omnibus, 2006.Google Scholar
  7. Berrios, German E. “Hypochondriasis: A History of the Concept.” In Hypochondriasis: Modern Perspectives on an Ancient Malady, edited by Vladan Starcevic and Don R. Lipsitt, 3–20. New York: Oxford University Press, 2001.Google Scholar
  8. ———. “In the Name of Hygieia and Hippocrates: A Quest for the Preservation of Health and Virtue.” In New Medical Challenges during the Scottish Enlightenment, edited by Guenter B. Risse, vol. 76, 135–169, Clio Medica. Amsterdam: Editions Rodopi, 2005.Google Scholar
  9. Bonnet, Charles. Essai analytique sur les facultés de l’âme [1760].Google Scholar
  10. Brillat-Savarin, Anthelme. Physiologie du goût [first ed. 1826].Google Scholar
  11. Brockliss, Laurence and Colin Jones, The Medical World of Early Modern France. Oxford: Clarendon, 1997.Google Scholar
  12. Broussais, François-Joseph-Victor. De l’irritation et de la folie. [1828–39]. Paris: Fayard, 1986.Google Scholar
  13. Brunaud, Étienne. De l’hygiène des gens de lettres ou Essai médico-philosophique sur les moyens les plus propres à développer ses talents et son aptitude naturelles pour les sciences, sans nuire à sa santé et sans contracter des maladies. Paris: Méquignon, 1819.Google Scholar
  14. Buffon, Georges Louis Leclerc, comte de and Louis-Jean-Marie Daubenton. Histoire naturelle générale et particulière: avec la description du Cabinet du Roy. Paris: Imprimerie royale, 1749–87. 21 vols.Google Scholar
  15. Cabanis, Pierre-Jean-Georges. Rapports du physique et du moral de l’homme [1802]. Paris: Slatkine, 1980.Google Scholar
  16. ———. On the Relations Between the Physical and Moral Aspects of Man. Edited by George Mora and Translated by Margaret Duggan Mora, 2 vols. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1981.Google Scholar
  17. Chalmin, Ronan and Anne Vila. “Malade de son génie’: raconter les pathologies des gens de lettres, de Tissot à Balzac.” Dix-huitième siècle 47 (2015): 55–71.Google Scholar
  18. Charpentier, C. A. T. Essai sur la mélancolie. Paris: Farge, 1803.Google Scholar
  19. Charrier-Vozel, Marianne. “Sociabilités de la maladie: des manuels épistolaires aux lettres de Mme Riccoboni, de Mme du Deffand, de Mme d’Épinay, et de Mlle de Lespinasse.” Dix-huitième siècle 4, no. 1 (2015): 231–243.Google Scholar
  20. Condillac, Etienne Bonnot de. Traité des sensations [1754].Google Scholar
  21. Cottom, Daniel. Cannibals and Philosophers: Bodies of Enlightenment. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2001.Google Scholar
  22. Diderot, Denis. Éléments de physiologie [1778]. In Œuvres complètes, edited by Herbert Dieckmann, Jacques Proust, Jean Varloot, et al., 34 vols, anticipated. Paris: Hermann, 1975–. Abbreviated here as DPV. Vol. 17.Google Scholar
  23. ———. Lettre sur les sourds et muets. In DPV, vol. 4.Google Scholar
  24. Edelman, Nicole. Les Métamorphoses de l’hystérie: Du début du XIXe siècle à la Grande Guerre. Paris: Editions de la Découverte, 2003.Google Scholar
  25. Emch-Dériaz, Antoinette. “The Non-Naturals Made Easy.” In The Popularization of Medicine, 1650–1850, edited by Roy Porter, 134–159. London and New York: Routledge, 1992a.Google Scholar
  26. ———. Tissot, Physician of the Enlightenment. New York: Peter Lang, 1992b.Google Scholar
  27. Goldstein, Jan. Console and Classify. The French Psychiatric Profession in the Nineteenth Century. Chicago: Chicago University Press, 1987.Google Scholar
  28. Hagner, Michael. “Skulls, Brains and Memorial Culture: On Cerebral Biographies of Scientists in the Nineteenth Century.” Science in Context 16, nos. 1/2 (2003): 195–218.Google Scholar
  29. Hatfield, Gary. “Remaking the Science of Mind: Psychology as Natural Science.” In Inventing Human Science: Eighteenth-Century Domains, edited by Christopher Fox, Roy Porter, and Robert Wokler, 184–231. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1995.Google Scholar
  30. Hecquet, Philippe. La Médecine, la chirurgie et la pharmacie des pauvres [1740].Google Scholar
  31. Kassouf, Susan. “The Shared Pain of the Golden Vein: The Discursive Proximity of Jewish and Scholarly Diseases in the Late Eighteenth Century.” Eighteenth-Century Studies 32, no. 1 (1998): 101–110.Google Scholar
  32. Le Camus, Antoine. La Médecine de l’esprit [1753].Google Scholar
  33. Le Yaouanc, Moïse. Nosographie de l’humanité balzacienne. Paris: Librairie Maloine, 1959.Google Scholar
  34. Lorry, Charles. Essai sur l’usage des alimens, pour servir de commentaire aux livres diététiques d’Hippocrate [1754], 2nd ed., 2 vols. Paris: Vincent, 1757.Google Scholar
  35. Lotterie, Florence. Le Genre des Lumières, Femme et philosophe au XVIIIe siècle. Paris: Classiques Garnier, 2013.Google Scholar
  36. Louyer-Villermay, Jean-Baptiste. Recherches historiques et médicales sur l’hypocondrie, isolée, par l’observation et l’analyse, de l’hystérie et de la mélancolie. Paris: Méquignon, 1802.Google Scholar
  37. ———. Traité des maladies nerveuses ou vapeurs, et particulièrement de l’hystérie et de l’hypocondrie, 2 vols. Paris: Méquignon, 1816.Google Scholar
  38. Marquer, Bertrand. “De l’épigastre au ventre: œconomia animale et économie du corps social.” Romantisme 154, no. 4 (2011): 53–64.Google Scholar
  39. ———. “Portrait de l’artiste en dyspeptique.” In La Cuisine de l’œuvre au XIXe siècle: Regards d’artistes et d’écrivains, edited by Bertrand Marquer and Éléonore Reverzy, 63–75. Strasbourg: Presses Universitaires de Strasbourg, 2013.Google Scholar
  40. Micale, Mark S. Hysterical Men: The Hidden History of Male Nervous Illness. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2008.Google Scholar
  41. Nicoli, Miriam. Les savants et les livres. Autour d’Albrecht von Haller (1708–1777) et Samuel-Auguste Tissot (1728–1797). Geneva: Slatkine, 2013.Google Scholar
  42. Pasco, Alan. Sick Heroes: French Society and Literature in the Romantic Age 1750–1850. Exeter: University of Exeter Press, 1997.Google Scholar
  43. Petetin, Jacques-Henri-Désiré. Mémoire sur la découverte des phénomènes que prèsentent la catalepsie et le somnabulisme [1787].Google Scholar
  44. Pigeaud, Jackie. Aux portes de la psychiatrie: Pinel, l’ancien et le moderne. Paris: Aubier, 2001.Google Scholar
  45. Pilloud, Séverine. Les mots du corps: Expérience de la maladie dans les lettres de patients à un médecin du 18e siècle: Samuel Auguste Tissot. Lausanne: Éditions BHMS, 2013.Google Scholar
  46. Pinel, Philippe. Nosographie philosophique, ou La méthode de l’analyse appliquée à la médecine, 2 vols. Paris: Maradan, 1797.Google Scholar
  47. Ramazzini, Bernardino. De Morbis Artificium diatriba [1700]. Translated as Treatise of the Diseases of Tradesmen, Shewing the Various Influence of Particular Trades Upon the State of Health. London: Andrew Bell, Ralph Smith, Daniel Midwinter et al., 1705.Google Scholar
  48. Réveillé-Parise, Joseph-Henri. Physiologie et hygiène des hommes livrés aux travaux de l’esprit ou Recherches sur le physique et le moral, les habitudes, les maladies et le régime des gens de lettres [1834], 2 vols. Paris: Chez G.-A. Dentu, 1843.Google Scholar
  49. Rey, Roselyne. Naissance et développement du vitalisme en France de la deuxième moitié du dix-huitième siècle à la fin du Premier Empire, SVEC 381. Oxford: Voltaire Foundation, 2000.Google Scholar
  50. Ribard, Dinah. “Pathologies intellectuelles et littérarisation de la médecine: Une voie pour l’histoire du travail intellectuel.” In Littérature et médecine: Approches et perspectives (XVIe–XIXe siècle), edited by Andrea Carlino and Alexandre Wenger, 113–134. Geneva: Droz, 2007.Google Scholar
  51. Roman, Myriam. “Avatars romanesques du penseur chez Mme de Staël, Balzac et Hugo.” Romantisme 34, no. 124 (2004): 89–102.Google Scholar
  52. Rousseau, George S. “Introduction.” In Hypochondriasis: A Practical Treatise, 1766, edited by John Hill, i–xii. Los Angeles: William Andrews Clark Memorial Library, 1969.Google Scholar
  53. Rousseau, Jean-Jacques. “Préface à Narcisse ou l’Amant de lui-même” [1752].Google Scholar
  54. Roussel, Pierre. Système physique et moral de la femme [1775].Google Scholar
  55. Spang, Rebecca L. The Invention of the Restaurant: Paris and Modern Gastronomic Culture. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2000.Google Scholar
  56. Spary, E. C. Eating the Enlightenment: Food and the Sciences in Paris, 1670–1760. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2012.Google Scholar
  57. Tissot, Samuel-Auguste. De la santé des gens de lettres, 3rd rev. ed. Lausanne: Grasset, 1775.Google Scholar
  58. ———. An Essay on Diseases Incident to Literary and Sedentary Persons, with Proper Rules for Preventing Their Fatal Consequences, and Instructions for Their Cure. Translated by James Kirkpatrick. London: Norse and Dilly, 1769.Google Scholar
  59. Trillat, Étienne. Histoire de l’hystérie. Paris: Éditions Seghers, 1986.Google Scholar
  60. Vidal, Fernando. Les sciences de l’âme, XVI–XVIIIe siècle. Paris: Honoré Champion, 2006.Google Scholar
  61. Vila, Anne C. “The Philosophe’s Stomach: Hedonism, Hypochondria, and the ‘New’ Intellectual in Enlightenment France.” In Cultures of the Abdomen: Dietetics, Digestion, and Fat in the Modern World, edited by Christopher E. Forth and Ana Cardin-Coyne, 89–104. New York: Palgrave, 2005.Google Scholar
  62. Voltaire [Françcois-Marie Arouet]. Œuvres complètes de Voltaire. Correspondance générale, 66 vols. Paris: Chez Antoine-Augustin Renouard, 1819–1825. Vol. 56.Google Scholar
  63. ———. “Sensation,” Dictionnaire philosophique (1764). In Oeuvres complètes de Voltaire / The Complete Works of Voltaire, 143 vols. Geneva: Institut et Musée Voltaire; Toronto: University of Toronto Press; Oxford: Voltaire Foundation, 1968. Vol. 36.Google Scholar
  64. ———. “Passions,” Questions sur l’Encyclopédie (1774). In Oeuvres complètes de Voltaire, vol. 42B.Google Scholar
  65. Williams, Elizabeth A. The Physical and the Moral: Anthropology, Physiology and Philosophical Medicine in France, 1750–1850. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1994.Google Scholar
  66. ———. “Stomach and Psyche: Eating, Digestion, and Mental Illness in the Medicine of Philippe Pinel.” Bulletin of the History of Medicine 84 (2010): 358–386.Google Scholar
  67. Zimmermann, Johann-Georg. Von der Erfahrung in der Arzneikunst [1763].Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Anne Vila
    • 1
  1. 1.University of Wisconsin–MadisonMadison USA

Personalised recommendations