An Anthropologist on Mars

Seven Paradoxical Tales

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Author: Oliver Sacks

Publisher: Vintage

ISBN: 0345805887

Category: Psychology

Page: 336

View: 1551

To these seven narratives of neurological disorder Dr. Sacks brings the same humanity, poetic observation, and infectious sense of wonder that are apparent in his bestsellers Awakenings and The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat. These men, women, and one extraordinary child emerge as brilliantly adaptive personalities, whose conditions have not so much debilitated them as ushered them into another reality.

An Anthropologist on Mars

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Author: Oliver Sacks

Publisher: Vintage Canada

ISBN: 0307367800

Category: Psychology

Page: 340

View: 3471

Here are seven detailed and fascinating portraits of neurological patients, including a surgeon consumed by the compulsive tics of Tourette's syndrome unless he is operating; an artist who loses all sense of color in a car accident, but finds a new sensibility and creative power in black and white; and an autistic professor who cannot decipher the simplest social exchange between humans, but has built a career out of her intuitive understanding of animal behavior. Sacks combines the well honed mind of an academician with the verve of a true storyteller, and manages to produce a book at once accessible and challenging. The capacity to observe the patient as a different form of human being, instead of as just an 'interesting case', is a true insight into what Medicine should be; furthermore, as the author insistently teaches, neurological diseases differ from other ailments in that they become a true portion of the persona, and ,in a sense, they belong to the patient, whereas most people consider disease to be something that 'happens' to them, an outside influence not to be confused with the true Self. It is a truly accessible and moving book, and teaches us all something about the diversity and depths of the human kind. From the Trade Paperback edition.

An Anthropologist on Mars

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Author: Oliver Sacks

Publisher: Pan Macmillan

ISBN: 033053713X

Category: Literary Collections

Page: 336

View: 3087

'An inexhaustible tourist at the farther reaches of the mind, Sacks presents, in sparse, unsentimental prose, the stories of seven of his patients. The result is as rich, vivid and compelling as any collection of short fictional stories' Independent on Sunday As with his previous bestseller, The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat, in An Anthropologist on Mars Oliver Sacks uses case studies to illustrate the myriad ways in which neurological conditions can affect our sense of self, our experience of the world, and how we relate to those around us. Writing with his trademark blend of scientific rigour and human compassion, he describes patients such as the colour-blind painter or the surgeon with compulsive tics that disappear in the operating theatre; patients for whom disorientation and alienation - but also adaptation - are inescapable facts of life.

Hallucinations

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Author: Oliver Sacks

Publisher: Vintage

ISBN: 030795725X

Category: Science

Page: 336

View: 2845

Have you ever seen something that wasn’t really there? Heard someone call your name in an empty house? Sensed someone following you and turned around to find nothing? Hallucinations don’t belong wholly to the insane. Much more commonly, they are linked to sensory deprivation, intoxication, illness, or injury. People with migraines may see shimmering arcs of light or tiny, Lilliputian figures of animals and people. People with failing eyesight, paradoxically, may become immersed in a hallucinatory visual world. Hallucinations can be brought on by a simple fever or even the act of waking or falling asleep, when people have visions ranging from luminous blobs of color to beautifully detailed faces or terrifying ogres. Those who are bereaved may receive comforting “visits” from the departed. In some conditions, hallucinations can lead to religious epiphanies or even the feeling of leaving one’s own body. Humans have always sought such life-changing visions, and for thousands of years have used hallucinogenic compounds to achieve them. As a young doctor in California in the 1960s, Oliver Sacks had both a personal and a professional interest in psychedelics. These, along with his early migraine experiences, launched a lifelong investigation into the varieties of hallucinatory experience. Here, with his usual elegance, curiosity, and compassion, Dr. Sacks weaves together stories of his patients and of his own mind-altering experiences to illuminate what hallucinations tell us about the organization and structure of our brains, how they have influenced every culture’s folklore and art, and why the potential for hallucination is present in us all, a vital part of the human condition.

The Mind's Eye

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Author: Oliver Sacks

Publisher: Knopf Canada

ISBN: 0307366367

Category: Psychology

Page: 288

View: 6167

From the author of the #1 national bestselling Musicophilia comes a truly visionary book: an exploration of the remarkable, unpredictable ways that our brains cope with the loss of sight by finding new forms of perception to create worlds as complete and rich as the no-longer-visible world. Following the phenomenal success of his international bestseller Musicophilia, the inimitable Oliver Sacks returns with another book on the extraordinary interaction between our brain and our senses — in this case, vision. In The Mind's Eye, Sacks examines questions ranging from the primary experiences of how we perceive depth or color or motion to the complex matter of how different individuals have varied ways of thinking and experiencing or recreating the visual world. Like The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat and An Anthropologist on Mars, Sacks's new book is based primarily on individual stories — including Sacks's own experience of an ocular tumor that left him unable to perceive depth. As always, he embeds these case histories in a rich historical and scientific context. Sacks goes beyond basic vision to explore perception, hallucination and the power of visualization, as well as the ocular effects of migraine, epilepsy and other conditions. Oliver Sacks is our perfect guide to the visual world, a realm that, it turns out, is much, much more complicated than we could have imagined. From the Hardcover edition.

Seeing Voices

A Journey Into the World of the Deaf

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Author: Oliver W. Sacks

Publisher: Univ of California Press

ISBN: 9780520060838

Category: Social Science

Page: 180

View: 3777

A neurologist investigates the world of the deaf, examining their past and present treatment at the hands of society, and assesses the value and significance of sign language.

Becoming an Anthropologist

A Memoir and a Guide to Anthropology

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Author: Gerald Mars

Publisher: Cambridge Scholars Publishing

ISBN: 1443883921

Category: Social Science

Page: 235

View: 1644

Mars’ graphic and often vivid narrative can be read simply as the anecdotal memoirs of an anthropologist. The experiences he recounts are sometimes hilarious, touch occasionally on the dangerous, and are always sensitively and expertly explored. But for those who want to know more, the book’s expansive footnotes and references to key sources also offer a stimulating introduction to social anthropology, its theories and its methods. Mars begins by describing his childhood life in a tightly structured working class community during World War Two. He then contrasts this with an account of the hidden underlife of an entrepreneurial, crime-prone seaside resort, Blackpool, where he worked as a spieler (barker). Two years’ experience of National Service provides an account of the social organisation of the RAF, followed by discussion of aspects of the organisation of Cambridge University. What follows then is a lifetime spent living and working in different cultures around the world. The results are continual insights gained by comparison and contrasts that illuminate aspects not only of other cultures, but, also, of our own.

The River of Consciousness

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Author: Oliver Sacks

Publisher: Vintage

ISBN: 0385352573

Category: Science

Page: 256

View: 6938

From the best-selling author of Gratitude, On the Move, and Musicophilia, a collection of essays that displays Oliver Sacks's passionate engagement with the most compelling and seminal ideas of human endeavor: evolution, creativity, memory, time, consciousness, and experience. Oliver Sacks, a scientist and a storyteller, is beloved by readers for the extraordinary neurological case histories (Awakenings, An Anthropologist on Mars) in which he introduced and explored many now familiar disorders--autism, Tourette's syndrome, face blindness, savant syndrome. He was also a memoirist who wrote with honesty and humor about the remarkable and strange encounters and experiences that shaped him (Uncle Tungsten, On the Move, Gratitude). Sacks, an Oxford-educated polymath, had a deep familiarity not only with literature and medicine but with botany, animal anatomy, chemistry, the history of science, philosophy, and psychology. The River of Consciousness is one of two books Sacks was working on up to his death, and it reveals his ability to make unexpected connections, his sheer joy in knowledge, and his unceasing, timeless project to understand what makes us human.

Migraine

Understanding a Common Disorder

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Author: Oliver W. Sacks

Publisher: Univ of California Press

ISBN: 9780520051997

Category: Migraine

Page: 270

View: 5967

In recent years the bestselling Awakenings and The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat have received great critical acclaim, but Oliver Sacks's readers may remember that he began his medical career working with migraine patients. In this, the latest edition of "Migraine," he returns to his first book and enriches it with additional case histories, new findings, and practical information on treatment. To define "migraine, " suggests Oliver Sacks, one must embrace the dizzying variety of experiences of its sufferers. For some, the affliction features of a headache of monumental proportions. For others, there is no pain at all. Some attacks are triggered by weather, some intense light. Still others consist of intense light -- hallucinatory displays of dazzling loops, stars, and geometrics. "Migraine" is Sacks's brilliant examination of a debilitating ailment and the profound implications of neurological illness. Synthesizing his patients' case histories with 2,000 years of human research into the problem, he casts the migraine as exemplar of our psychological transparency, a complex biological response to external factors. Here is a classic meditation on the nature of health and malady, on the unity of mind and body. Here, too, is Sacks's discovery of how the migraine shows us, through hallucinatory displays, the elemental activity of the cerebral cortex -- and potentially, the self-organizing patterns of Nature itself. Enormously compelling, compassionate, and profound, Migraine offers comfort for sufferers -- and insight to all.

Oaxaca Journal

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Author: Oliver Sacks

Publisher: Vintage Canada

ISBN: 0307402169

Category: Travel

Page: 160

View: 1243

"I have been an inveterate keeper of journals since I was 14 especially at times of adventure and crisis and travel. Here, for the first time, such a journal made its way to publication, not that much changed from the raw, handwritten journal that I kept during my fascinated 9 days in Oaxaca." Dr. Oliver Sacks Oliver Sacks is best known as an explorer of the human mind, a neurologist with a gift for the complex, insightful portrayals of people and their conditions that fuel the phenomenal success of his books. But he is also a card-carrying member of the American Fern Society, and since childhood has been fascinated by these primitive plants and their ability to survive and adapt. Now the bestselling author of Awakenings and The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat brings his ceaseless curiosity and eye for the wondrous to the province of Oaxaca, Mexico. Oaxaca Journal is Sacks's spellbinding account of his trip with a group of fellow fern enthusiasts to the beautiful, history-steeped province of Oaxaca. Bringing together Sacks's passion for natural history and the richness of human culture with his penetrating curiosity and trammeling eye for detail, Oaxaca Journal is a captivating evocation of a places, its plants, its people and its myriad wonders.

A Leg to Stand On

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Author: Oliver Sacks,Oliver W. Sacks

Publisher: Simon and Schuster

ISBN: 0684853957

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 224

View: 5891

A neurologist describes his struggle to recover from a mountain climbing accident and examines the effects of a neural injury on the sense of self

The Man Who Mistook His Wife For A Hat: And Other Clinical Tales

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Author: Oliver Sacks

Publisher: Simon and Schuster

ISBN: 0684853949

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 243

View: 8624

Presents a series of stories about men and women who, representing both medical and literary oddities, raise fundamental questions about the nature of reality

Uncle Tungsten

Memories of a Chemical Boyhood

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Author: Oliver Sacks

Publisher: Vintage

ISBN: 0804172153

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 352

View: 9397

Long before Oliver Sacks became a distinguished neurologist and bestselling writer, he was a small English boy fascinated by metals–also by chemical reactions (the louder and smellier the better), photography, squids and cuttlefish, H.G. Wells, and the periodic table. In this endlessly charming and eloquent memoir, the author of The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat and Awakenings chronicles his love affair with science and the magnificently odd and sometimes harrowing childhood in which that love affair unfolded. In Uncle Tungsten we meet Sacks’ extraordinary family, from his surgeon mother (who introduces the fourteen-year-old Oliver to the art of human dissection) and his father, a family doctor who imbues in his son an early enthusiasm for housecalls, to his “Uncle Tungsten,” whose factory produces tungsten-filament lightbulbs. We follow the young Oliver as he is exiled at the age of six to a grim, sadistic boarding school to escape the London Blitz, and later watch as he sets about passionately reliving the exploits of his chemical heroes–in his own home laboratory. Uncle Tungsten is a crystalline view of a brilliant young mind springing to life, a story of growing up which is by turns elegiac, comic, and wistful, full of the electrifying joy of discovery.

On the Move

A Life

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Author: Oliver Sacks

Publisher: Vintage

ISBN: 0385352557

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 416

View: 6492

When Oliver Sacks was twelve years old, a perceptive schoolmaster wrote in his report: “Sacks will go far, if he does not go too far.” It is now abundantly clear that Sacks has never stopped going. From its opening pages on his youthful obsession with motorcycles and speed, On the Move is infused with his restless energy. As he recounts his experiences as a young neurologist in the early 1960s, first in California, where he struggled with drug addiction, and then in New York, where he discovered a long-forgotten illness in the back wards of a chronic hospital, we see how his engagement with patients comes to define his life. With unbridled honesty and humor, Sacks shows us that the same energy that drives his physical passions—weight lifting and swimming—also drives his cerebral passions. He writes about his love affairs, both romantic and intellectual; his guilt over leaving his family to come to America; his bond with his schizophrenic brother; and the writers and scientists—Thom Gunn, A. R. Luria, W. H. Auden, Gerald M. Edelman, Francis Crick—who influenced him. On the Move is the story of a brilliantly unconventional physician and writer—and of the man who has illuminated the many ways that the brain makes us human.

Gratitude

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Author: Oliver Sacks

Publisher: Knopf

ISBN: 045149296X

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 64

View: 6930

“My predominant feeling is one of gratitude. I have loved and been loved. I have been given much and I have given something in return. Above all, I have been a sentient being, a thinking animal, on this beautiful planet, and that in itself has been an enormous privilege and adventure.” —Oliver Sacks No writer has succeeded in capturing the medical and human drama of illness as honestly and as eloquently as Oliver Sacks. During the last few months of his life, he wrote a set of essays in which he movingly explored his feelings about completing a life and coming to terms with his own death. “It is the fate of every human being,” Sacks writes, “to be a unique individual, to find his own path, to live his own life, to die his own death.” Together, these four essays form an ode to the uniqueness of each human being and to gratitude for the gift of life. “Oliver Sacks was like no other clinician, or writer. He was drawn to the homes of the sick, the institutions of the most frail and disabled, the company of the unusual and the ‘abnormal.’ He wanted to see humanity in its many variants and to do so in his own, almost anachronistic way—face to face, over time, away from our burgeoning apparatus of computers and algorithms. And, through his writing, he showed us what he saw.” —Atul Gawande, author of Being Mortal

Awakenings

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Author: Oliver Sacks

Publisher: Vintage

ISBN: 0307834093

Category: Psychology

Page: 464

View: 2254

Awakenings--which inspired the major motion picture--is the remarkable story of a group of patients who contracted sleeping-sickness during the great epidemic just after World War I. Frozen for decades in a trance-like state, these men and women were given up as hopeless until 1969, when Dr. Oliver Sacks gave them the then-new drug L-DOPA, which had an astonishing, explosive, "awakening" effect. Dr. Sacks recounts the moving case histories of his patients, their lives, and the extraordinary transformations which went with their reintroduction to a changed world.

The Island of the Colorblind

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Author: Oliver Sacks

Publisher: Vintage

ISBN: 0345805895

Category: Psychology

Page: 336

View: 1802

Oliver Sacks has always been fascinated by islands--their remoteness, their mystery, above all the unique forms of life they harbor. For him, islands conjure up equally the romance of Melville and Stevenson, the adventure of Magellan and Cook, and the scientific wonder of Darwin and Wallace. Drawn to the tiny Pacific atoll of Pingelap by intriguing reports of an isolated community of islanders born totally color-blind, Sacks finds himself setting up a clinic in a one-room island dispensary, where he listens to these achromatopic islanders describe their colorless world in rich terms of pattern and tone, luminance and shadow. And on Guam, where he goes to investigate the puzzling neurodegenerative paralysis endemic there for a century, he becomes, for a brief time, an island neurologist, making house calls with his colleague John Steele, amid crowing cockerels, cycad jungles, and the remains of a colonial culture. The islands reawaken Sacks's lifelong passion for botany--in particular, for the primitive cycad trees, whose existence dates back to the Paleozoic--and the cycads are the starting point for an intensely personal reflection on the meaning of islands, the dissemination of species, the genesis of disease, and the nature of deep geologic time. Out of an unexpected journey, Sacks has woven an unforgettable narrative which immerses us in the romance of island life, and shares his own compelling vision of the complexities of being human. From the Hardcover edition.

Insomniac City

New York, Oliver, and Me

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Author: Bill Hayes

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing USA

ISBN: 1620404958

Category: Literary Collections

Page: 304

View: 1005

Amazon's Best Biographies and Memoirs of 2017 List A moving celebration of what Bill Hayes calls "the evanescent, the eavesdropped, the unexpected" of life in New York City, and an intimate glimpse of his relationship with the late Oliver Sacks. "A beautifully written once-in-a-lifetime book, about love, about life, soul, and the wonderful loving genius Oliver Sacks, and New York, and laughter and all of creation."--Anne Lamott Bill Hayes came to New York City in 2009 with a one-way ticket and only the vaguest idea of how he would get by. But, at forty-eight years old, having spent decades in San Francisco, he craved change. Grieving over the death of his partner, he quickly discovered the profound consolations of the city's incessant rhythms, the sight of the Empire State Building against the night sky, and New Yorkers themselves, kindred souls that Hayes, a lifelong insomniac, encountered on late-night strolls with his camera. And he unexpectedly fell in love again, with his friend and neighbor, the writer and neurologist Oliver Sacks, whose exuberance--"I don't so much fear death as I do wasting life," he tells Hayes early on--is captured in funny and touching vignettes throughout. What emerges is a portrait of Sacks at his most personal and endearing, from falling in love for the first time at age seventy-five to facing illness and death (Sacks died of cancer in August 2015). Insomniac City is both a meditation on grief and a celebration of life. Filled with Hayes's distinctive street photos of everyday New Yorkers, the book is a love song to the city and to all who have felt the particular magic and solace it offers.

Legitimacy in Public Administration

A Discourse Analysis

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Author: O. C. McSwite

Publisher: SAGE

ISBN: 9780761902744

Category: Political Science

Page: 306

View: 6385

This volume faces the challenge of the 21st century in this masterly analysis of the legitimate options open to public administration in a democratic society. Against a background of globalization of markets, increased prejudice, and racial and ethnic violence, the author demonstrates the centrality of administrative legitimacy to a 21st century that is an improvement over the 20th.

Vintage Sacks

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Author: Oliver Sacks

Publisher: Vintage

ISBN: 9780307430052

Category: Psychology

Page: 208

View: 6688

Vintage Readers are a perfect introduction to some of the great modern writers presented in attractive, accessible paperback editions. “It is Dr. Sacks’s gift that he has found a way to enlarge our experience and understanding of what the human is.” —The Wall Street Journal Dubbed “the poet laureate of medicine” by The New York Times, Oliver Sacks is a practicing neurologist and a mesmerizing storyteller. His empathetic accounts of his patients’s lives—and wrily observed narratives of his own—convey both the extreme borderlands of human experience and the miracles of ordinary seeing, speaking, hearing, thinking, and feeling. Vintage Sacks includes the introduction and case study “Rose R.” from Awakenings (the book that inspired the Oscar-nominated movie), as well as “A Deaf World” from Seeing Voices; “The Visions of Hildegard” from Migraine; excerpts from “Island Hopping” and “Pingelap” from The Island of the Colorblind; “A Surgeon’s Life” from An Anthropologist on Mars; and two chapters from Sacks’s acclaimed memoir Uncle Tungsten. From the Trade Paperback edition.