Bell's Reviews > The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat and Other Clinical Tales

The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat and Other Clinical Tales by Oliver Sacks
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's review
Sep 14, 2007

it was amazing
bookshelves: health

Very interesting neurological case studies that begged me to reconsider intelligence and "normalcy" particularly in terms of visual perception and its relationship to reality. Also fascinating was the profound structure that the arts (he specifically mentions music, dance, story-telling and drawing) provide for those with the inability to form or develop conceptual frameworks. Indeed, it seems that the fine arts aren't just high-concepts of beauty and art, but healing mechanisms crucial to many of his patients' feeling whole or, as he mentions, "preserving [their] identity in adverse circumstances."

The brain is a fascinating subject, but the doctor's compassion and passion for his patients, for his field, is inspiring to say the least. This book has raised several questions for me in terms of viewing people for what or who they are rather than who they are not. It was far from clinical which is probably the reason this book seems to have become a classic. (My book was copyright 1985. It's been updated since then.)

Love the book-will probably read again at some point. Hope to read his other books soon.

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Reading Progress

September 14, 2007 – Shelved
Started Reading
January 1, 2008 – Finished Reading
May 16, 2008 – Shelved as: health

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