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The Knife Man: Blood, Body-snatching and the Birth of Modern Surgery

The Knife Man: Blood, Body-snatching and the Birth of Modern Surgery

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WINNER OF THE MEDICAL JOURNALISTS' OPEN BOOK AWARD 2005 Revered and feared in equal measure, John Hunter was the most famous surgeon of eighteenth-century London. Rich or poor, aristocrat or human freak, suffering Georgians knew that Hunter's skills might well save their lives -but if he failed, their corpses could end up on his dissecting table, their bones and organs destined for display in his remarkable, macabre museum. Maverick medical pioneer, adored teacher, brilliant naturalist, Hunter was a key figure of the Enlightenment who transformed surgery, advanced biological understanding and even anticipated the evolutionary theories of Darwin. He provided inspiration both for Dr Jekyll and Dr Dolittle. But the extremes to which he went to pursue his scientific mission raised question marks then as now. John Hunter's extraordinary world comes to life in this remarkable, award-winning biography written by a wonderful new talent.

BiographyBiography: generalBiography: historical, political & militaryMedical & VeterinaryMedicine: general issuesHistory of medicineMedical & VeterinarySurgery Publisher: Transworld Publishers Ltd Publication Date: 03/04/2006 ISBN-13: 9780553816181  Details: Type: Paperback Format: Books
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Wendy Moore is a writer and journalist. After working as a reporter for local newspapers she has specialized in health and medical topics for more than twenty years. As a freelance journalist her work has been published in a range of newspapers and magazines, including the Guardian, the Observer and the British Medical Journal, and has won several awards. Having written extensively on medical history, she obtained the Diploma in the History of Medicine from the Society of Apothecaries (DHMSA) in 1999 and won the Maccabean prize for best dissertation that year. She lives in south London with her partner, Peter, also a journalist, and two children, Sam and Susannah. The Knife Man is her first book.

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David Mitchell writes - Moore has a historian's respect both for the past and for her colourful (and blood-spattered) subject - a founding father of modern surgery - but she also has a novelist's knack at (re)creating a world and framing a narrative within it, peopled with ambiguous heroes and complex villains. (If you enjoy this, try her new one, 'Wedlock'.)

David Mitchell - 11/03/2011


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