The River of Consciousness (Hardcover)

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This collection of essays was outlined by the beloved neurologist and author in the weeks before his death. Evolution, creativity, the perception of time—these are among the themes Sacks effortlessly navigates in his wonderfully warm and personal style. But whether he is writing about the history of botany or the experience of being an earthworm, always present is a sense of his extraordinary intellect, and of retrospection over a long and wide-ranging career. Especially poignant are his observations, often humorous, of his own aging body—in fact, “Mishearings” (p. 123) is worth a read on its own, and I recommend you do that right now. -Justin

— From Winter Gazette 2017


From the best-selling author of Gratitude, On the Move, and Musicophilia, a collection of essays that displays Oliver Sacks's passionate engagement with the most compelling and seminal ideas of human endeavor: evolution, creativity, memory, time, consciousness, and experience.

Oliver Sacks, a scientist and a storyteller, is beloved by readers for the extraordinary neurological case histories (Awakenings, An Anthropologist on Mars) in which he introduced and explored many now familiar disorders--autism, Tourette's syndrome, face blindness, savant syndrome. He was also a memoirist who wrote with honesty and humor about the remarkable and strange encounters and experiences that shaped him (Uncle Tungsten, On the Move, Gratitude). Sacks, an Oxford-educated polymath, had a deep familiarity not only with literature and medicine but with botany, animal anatomy, chemistry, the history of science, philosophy, and psychology. The River of Consciousness is one of two books Sacks was working on up to his death, and it reveals his ability to make unexpected connections, his sheer joy in knowledge, and his unceasing, timeless project to understand what makes us human.

About the Author

OLIVER SACKS was born in 1933 in London and was educated at Queen's College, Oxford. He completed his medical training at San Francisco's Mount Zion Hospital and at UCLA before moving to New York. Familiar to the readers of The New Yorker and The New York Review of Books, Dr. Sacks spent more than fifty years working as a neurologist and wrote many books, including The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat, Musicophilia, and Hallucinations, about the strange neurological predicaments and conditions of his patients. The New York Times referred to him as "the poet laureate of medicine," and over the years he received many awards, including honors from the Guggenheim Foundation, the National Science Foundation, the American Academy of Arts and Letters, The American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and the Royal College of Physicians. His memoir On the Move was published shortly before his death in August 2015.
Product Details
ISBN: 9780385352567
ISBN-10: 0385352565
Publisher: Knopf Publishing Group
Publication Date: October 24th, 2017
Pages: 256
Language: English