Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Academic castration

The word comes from the akademeia in ancient Greece, which derives from the Athenian hero, Akademos. Outside the city walls of Athens, the gymnasium was made famous byPlato as a center of learning. The sacred space, dedicated to the goddess of wisdom, Athena, had formerly been an olive grove, hence the expression "the groves of Academe. In these gardens, the philosopher Plato conversed with followers. Plato developed his sessions into a method of teaching philosophy and in 387 BC, established what is known today as the Old Academy. By extension Academia has come to mean the cultural accumulation of knowledge, its development and transmission across generations and its practitioners and transmitters. In the 17th century, British and French scholars used the term to describe types of institutions of higher learning.
Castration (also known as neutering or gonadectomy) is any action, surgical, chemical or otherwise, by which a biological maleloses use of the testes. (Orchiectomy specifically refers to surgical removal of one or both testes.) This causes sterilization (i.e., prevents them from reproducing); it also greatly reduces the production of certain hormones, such as testosterone. The term "castration" is sometimes also used to refer to the removal of the ovaries in the female, otherwise known as anoophorectomy or, in animals, spaying. Estrogen levels drop precipitously following oophorectomy, and long-term effects of the reduction of sex hormones are significant throughout the body.

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