Tag Archives: George Eliot

Spinoza and medical practice: can the philosophy of Baruch Spinoza enrich the thinking of doctors?

Norelle Lickiss Hobart, Tasmania, Australia   Portrait of Baruch de Spinoza (1632-1677), ca. 1665. Unknown. circa 1665. Gemäldesammlung der Herzog August Bibliothek, Wolfenbüttel, Germany. As doctors we seek to assuage the distress of our patients by relieving symptoms, guarding personal dignity, and remaining present even as they are dying. Yet despite these lofty goals, there […]

Queer and unked: disability, monstrosity, and George Eliot’s ‘Sympathy’

Christina Lee Kent, United Kingdom   Silas finds Eppie. Eliot, George. The Jenson Society, NY. In The Mill on the Floss, the intellectual and sensitive Philip Wakem, who has a curved spine from a fall in infancy, is called “a queer fellow, a humpback, and the son of a rogue.”1([II.vi]) In the manuscript Philip Wakem is branded […]

Pushing back at perceptions of epilepsy: the interplay between medicine and literature in three 19th-century British novels

Laura Fitzpatrick New York, United States If I wished to show a student the difficulties of getting at truth from medical experience, I would give him the history of epilepsy to read. —Oliver Wendell Holmes, 1891.1 As the nineteenth century dawned, the average Briton still understood epilepsy much in the way his ancient Greek counterpart […]

The Lifted Veil by George Eliot

A young and celebrated doctor, friend of M***, attempts a transfusion with his own blood. The operation succeeds and the dead woman is revived. In this brief flash of life, she recognizes Mme *** who has just entered the room, and “unveils” her guilt: “You plan to poison your husband,” she cries. -George Eliot, The […]