In lieu of an abstract, here is a brief excerpt of the content:

ofmedicine inthe variouscultures ofthepast. Itis lamentable that the author was not able to round out these background studies with the detailed development ofthe subjects they introduced to the degree he probably intended. This incompleteness notwithstanding, the book is immensely rewarding. It is beautifully written and highly informative and relates the past to the present as only a historian with the breadth ofconcept ofSigerist could achieve it. Ofparticular interest are the first two chapters, and ofthese, the one leading up to and dealing with Vedic medicine is a masterpiece. It graphically reflects his universal outlook which accords equal importance to those cultures which did not become part ofthe mainstream ofWesternthought.Only after reading this book, the incompleteness ofwhich makes the loss ofHenry Sigerist all the more poignant, can we fully appreciate the dynamic quality which he has infused into the history ofmedicine, his broadening ofthe requisites ofhistoriography to include the collateral social sciences, and his gift ofintegrating the evolution ofthe healing arts with that ofall other phases ofhuman endeavor. Ilza Veith University ofChicago Great Ideas in the History of Surgery. By Leo M. Zimmerman, M.D., and Ilza Veith, Ph.D. Baltimore, Md.: Williams & Wilkins Co., 1961. Pp. xii+587. $15.00. This delightful volume by Dr. Leo M. Zimmerman, professor and chairman ofthe Department ofSurgery at the Chicago Medical School, and Ilza Veith, associate professor ofthe history ofmedicine at the University ofChicago, should find a useful niche on the expanding shelfofsurgical history. It is a very readable and engaging book. The authors have used a large number of well-chosen woodcuts to illustrate the text for the earlier sections ofthe book. They add much to its attractiveness. Each chapter has a well annotated bibliography. The book is divided into nine sections, representing various periods in the development ofsurgery, detailed in forty-four chapters. The treatment of the subject matter is largely biographical, which, as the authors themselves admit, is a bit restrictive and probably accounts for several important omissions in a book whose proud title is Great Ideas in the History ofSurgery. The biographical method permits the authors to develop fascinating and interesting stories centering around the lives of the persons selected for biographical sketches. Obviously, if continued , suchtreatment would endup in a biographicaldictionary ofsurgicaldevelopment. Yet, cut offwhere you will, the biographical method automaticallydelimits the coverage. There is much to praise and little to criticize in this nice volume. It should make a strong appeal on reader interest, probably affording the authors occasion to bring out another edition. It is not easy to single out any particular section ofthe book for special commendation. Trauma and hernia, which have been so important in the chronology and development ofsurgery, are well dealt with. The obvious enthusiasm ofthe authors for some oftheir subjects in the biographical sections isjustifiable and easily understood. However, no history ofthe great ideas in surgery is complete without at least a reference to Leonardo da 380 Book Reviews Perspectives in Biology and Medicine ยท Spring 1962 Vinci, Oliver Wendell Holmes, Lemaire, and Semmelweiss. Certainly any story ofthe development ofsurgery is incomplete without an account oflocal anesthesia or without reference to Florence Nightingale and her important work. A chapter on the development ofhospitals, in which surgeons ultimately found their activity, would not be out ofplace in a book which traces the origins ofcontemporary surgical thought. The development of surgical specialization and the increasing trend toward cross-fertilization from physiology and biochemistry are stories that also deserve a place in a book bearing this one's brave title. Drs. Zimmerman and Veith have succeeded in compounding a very readable and delightful series ofbiographical sketches which should prove a useful source book as well as an entertaining diversion for occasional reading for all students who affect a special interest in the history ofsurgery. Owen H. Wangensteen, M.D. University ofMinnesota 38I ...

pdf

Additional Information

ISSN
1529-8795
Print ISSN
0031-5982
Pages
pp. 380-381
Launched on MUSE
2015-01-07
Open Access
No
Back To Top

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Without cookies your experience may not be seamless.