Medieval Birth Control Comparison Essay by MG

Medieval Birth Control
A look at methods of birth control and the social, cultural, judicial, scientific, and religious views towards it, in both medieval Islamic and Christian societies.
# 50079 | 3,081 words | 16 sources | APA | 2002 | CA

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This paper examines the use of birth control in Islamic and Christian regions during medieval times, its prevalence and acceptance in Islamic regions versus Christian regions, and the social and cultural implications surrounding it. Through an analysis of the reasoning of medieval Islamic jurists regarding contraception in contrast with the writings of St. Augustine and Thomas Aquinas, it shows how Islam permitted birth control, and Christianity did not. It looks at how Islamic rulings were based primarily on reason and logic and were rooted in a strong understanding of the principles of biology, not religious fervor. In contrast, it shows how, tragically, countless women died in Europe because Church leaders denounced contraception and kept from the public contraceptive means.

From the Paper:

"Knowledge of the biology of reproduction is one important factor affecting attitudes on birth control and abortion. Another is the nature of human life, for example, when does the fetus have a soul? The Islamic argument for the permission of contraception is a fascinating case where biological and scientific knowledge directly influenced ethical attitudes. Medieval Arabic literature, such as treatises on medicine, materia medica, and popular literature treated both contraception and abortion as two aspects of birth control. They recognized the difference between the two, and could distinguish between preparations that would work only as a contraceptive, as an abortifacient, or would work for both purposes."

Cite this Comparison Essay:

APA Format

Medieval Birth Control (2004, March 28) Retrieved April 12, 2024, from

MLA Format

"Medieval Birth Control" 28 March 2004. Web. 12 April. 2024. <>