“Teresa de Jesús, an illustrious epileptic”, first presentation of the seminar “Experience and Creativity”

On October 2, at 7:00 p.m. the seminar titled “Experience and Creativity” will be inaugurated at the Gonzalo Casas Pessino Cultural Diffusion Center  with a presentation by Dr. Esteban García-Albea titled “Teresa de Jesús, an illustrious epileptic”.

Dr. Esteban García-Albea, was born in Madrid in 1946. PhD in Medicine from the Complutense University with a special award from the PhD in Philosophy. Specialist in neurology, he has worked at the Puerta de Hierro Clinic and the “12 de Octubre” Hospital – where he was director. Head of the Neurology Unit of the “Principe de Asturias” University Hospital and professor of neurology, currently emeritus of the University of Alcalá. He has published more than two hundred works and twelve books on his specialty. His activity has focussed on the  history and humanities in medicine. Through his studies he discovered the epileptic condition of Santa Teresa in the monograph “Teresa de Jesus, an illustrious epileptic.” He is the director of Revista de Neurología, (Neurology journal), the second most widespread neurological magazine in the world, where he coordinates the history and humanities section. In addition to his medical and university work, he promptly linked his career to painting and literature. Considered an expressionist painter, he periodically exhibits in Madrid. His literary work is composed of many newspaper articles and stories. He is the author of about thirty short stories for the radio program La rebotica.

During his presentation, Dr. García-Albea, will try to define the ecstasy (raptures) of Teresa de Ahumada (Teresa de Jesus) and will be related to episodes of ecstasy recently identified as commercial crises (Dostoevsky epilepsy, Saint  Paul disease, ecstatic epilepsy). The Carmelite pathography will be reviewed, in particular its very well described ecstasy. The stereotyping of these ecstasies and the comparison with similar cases allows them to be considered epileptic, possibly secondary to cerebral cysticercosis.

Dr. Esteban García-Albea, speaker of the seminar “Experience and Creativity”, explains  the general lines of his presentation and  the choice of this character:

What are the general lines of your presentation?

Interested in a clinical case of ecstasy observed in clinical practice, we perform an analysis of historical cases and focus on a very unique patient, Dostoevsky, with episodes of epilepsy and  we arrive at Teresa de Jesus.

Why the choice of character?

Teresa de Jesus is an invitingly apt character to study. Indeed, her demonstrated literary talent capable of describing the “ineffable”, her capacity for psychological self-observation and the abundance of biographical information, especially that which she herself recounted in her autobiography.

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