Thursday, May 10, 2007

Five books about medicine or dissection

Sherwin B. Nuland suggests five books "about the fascinating history of medicine or of anatomical dissection" in The New Republic (free registration req.).

One title from Nuland's list:
Sherwin B. Nuland, Doctors: The Biography of Medicine

If you believe, as I do, that Thomas Carlyle was correct when he wrote, "History is the essence of numerous biographies," you'll love reading this book as much as I loved writing it. I've told the life stories of 13 eminent physicians, from Hippocrates in the classical period to Helen Taussig, who invented the blue-baby operation in the mid-twentieth century. In this way, the history of Western medicine is followed through its intellectual and literary development. The final chapter brings it all together by tracing the history of cardiac transplantation all the way from classical antiquity to its ultimate stages in the present.
Read about another title (this one not by Sherwin Nuland) on the list.

--Marshal Zeringue