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The Idea of Epilepsy
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Book description

Epilepsy has a fascinating history. To the medical historian Oswei Temkin it was 'the paradigm of the suffering of both body and soul in disease'. It is justifiably considered a window on brain function. And yet its story is more than simply a medical narrative, but one influenced also by scientific, societal and personal themes. Written for a medical and non-medical readership, this book describes the major developments in epilepsy between 1860–2020, a turbulent era in which science dominated as an explanatory model, medical theories and practices steered an erratic course, and societal attitudes and approaches to epilepsy fluctuated dramatically. In the middle of this maelstrom was the person with epilepsy at the mercy of social attitudes and legislation, and at times harmed as well as helped by medicine and science. So entangled is the history that intriguingly, as an entity, epilepsy may now be thought not even to exist.

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