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Behavioural Neurology and the Legacy of Norman Geschwind

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    Behavioural Neurology and the Legacy of Norman Geschwind. Edited by steven c schachter andorrin devinsky. (Pp 304; £84.50.) Published by Lippincott-Raven, Philadelphia. 1997. ISBN 0-397-51631-2.

    As the title suggests, this edited book is a tribute to the late Norman Geschwind written by 30 or so of his former colleagues and pupils. The first quarter is extremely engrossing and consists of series of short essays dealing with Geschwind as “educator”, “advisor”, “role model”, “teacher”, “mentor”, etc. The most enduring impression left by this section is what a truly remarkable person he was. I finished many chapters wishing that my exposure had not been limited to hearing a single lecture.

    Subsequent sections of the book are more conventional and cover Geschwind’s contributions in the areas of language disorders, apraxia, disconnection syndromes, frontal lobe disorders, epilepsy, and aspects of cerebral dominance. Most of the chapters are very well written, although there could perhaps have been a greater editorial input to avoid repetition. For those who have trained more it is salutary to be reminded of the monumental contributions made by this founding father in such a wide range of topics. The book is fitting tribute to a great man. It should be bought by anyone with an interest in the origins and development of behavioural neurology and neuropsychology but the high price is likely to deter a wider readership.