Tag Archives: Oliver Sacks

In praise of swimming: from Benjamin Franklin to Oliver Sacks

James L. Franklin Chicago, Illinois, United States   Oliver Sacks as a young child with his father. Courtesy of the Oliver Sacks Foundation. Benjamin Franklin (1706–1790) was not a physician, but many thought he was so-trained and referred to him as “Doctor” Franklin. After accepting an honorary doctorate from the University of St. Andrews in […]

Oliver Sacks and caring for the whole person

Margaret Marcum Boca Raton, Florida   Body shapes, female. Credit: Martin Addison. CC BY 4.0. Accessed via the Wellcome Collection. The neurologist Oliver Sacks—“The Poet Laureate of Medicine” according to The New York Times—developed an effective clinical method of treating the patient as a complete person rather than as a defective body part. He wrote […]

Defining medicine

Amira Athanasios Walnut Creek, California, USA   Image by Amira Athanasios Defining Medicine. The bolded script screamed at me from a massive poster hung six stories high along the side of the university hospital on my first day of medical school. Like most millennials, I pursued medicine with a deep conviction to make a difference. […]

Oliver Sacks and seeing beyond synecdoche

Colleen Donnelly   Thus she was a ‘moron’, ‘fool’, a ‘booby’, or so had appeared and so been called, throughout her whole life, but one with an unexpected, strangely moving, poetic power.  Superficially she was a mass of handicaps and incapacities, with the intense frustrations and anxieties attendant on these; at this level she was, […]