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Seized: Temporal Lobe Epilepsy As a Medical, Historical, and Artistic Phenomenon
     

Seized: Temporal Lobe Epilepsy As a Medical, Historical, and Artistic Phenomenon

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by Eve LaPlante
 

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"Fascinating account of medical research...LaPlante shows how a brain scar may cause bizarre aggressive or sexual behavior—and works of profound creative imagination." (Howard Gardner)

"Readers intrigued by Oliver Sacks' Man Who Mistook His Wife For A Hat will welcome LaPlante's book...Thoughtful...Highly recommended." (Library Journal)

"LaPlante's

Overview

"Fascinating account of medical research...LaPlante shows how a brain scar may cause bizarre aggressive or sexual behavior—and works of profound creative imagination." (Howard Gardner)

"Readers intrigued by Oliver Sacks' Man Who Mistook His Wife For A Hat will welcome LaPlante's book...Thoughtful...Highly recommended." (Library Journal)

"LaPlante's descriptions of the human brain are wonderfully concrete, and her empathy for epilepsy's victims is clear." (Kirkus Review)

"A major study...the implications for psychiatry are staggering." (Publishers Weekly)


Author Bio: Eve LaPlante has degrees from Princeton and Harvard. She has written for The Atlantic Monthly, The New York Times, Ladies' Home Journal, Working Woman, Parents, Country Living, and many other publications. She is working on a book about children of divorce.

Editorial Reviews

William Beatty
LaPlante begins her consideration of temporal lobe epilepsy (TLE), which may affect as many as two million Americans, with the work of researcher-physicians Hughlings Jackson, Wilder Penfield, and, most recently, Norman Geschwind. She then examines the cases of three patients who represent different manifestations of the disorder. A malady of concern to both neurology and psychiatry, TLE in a single subject often involves several symptoms of the Geschwind syndrome: hypergraphia (frequent and detailed writing), manifested by such sufferers as Dostoevsky, Tennyson, and Proust; hyperreligiosity, apparent in Joan of Arc; and overreliance on others, experienced by some of the patients who allowed LaPlante access to their medical records, as were two other symptoms, aggression and diminished or increased sexuality. Since TLE sufferers are sometimes diagnosed as schizophrenics and since causes and treatments are still being investigated, the disease is a concern of ongoing inquiry. For readers who want to join the inquiry, LaPlante's thoughtful and informative effort concludes with a long list of other reading.
Booknews
The author draws together a number of case studies and interweaves current thinking about a disorder that sometimes results in disability, sometimes in genius, and which has been shown to involve the personality although exact interrelationships are unclear. The material has been well-researched, but the dramatized case studies cloud rather than clarify the presentation. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780060166731
Publisher:
HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
08/01/1993
Edition description:
1st ed
Pages:
256

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Seized: Temporal Lobe Epilepsy As a Medical, Historical, and Artistic Phenomenon 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
At last, someone has brightly highlighted TLE's effects on behavior and personality. Eve LaPlante has elucidated in clear and sympathetic language the Geschwind constellation of personality traits often found in patients afflicted with TLE. LaPlante's SEIZED is a welcome guidepost for those like me who navigate daily life burdened with a fixation on the question of God, a relentless impulse to write, and the other often embarrassing TLE personality 'quirks.' This well-researched and infinitely readable book also offers an interesting examination of several literary and artistic men of genius who very likely had TLE--Vincent van Gogh, Gustave Flaubert, Lewis Carroll, Marcel Proust, Tennyson and Dostoevsky. LaPlante's medical detective work invites the TLE afflicted into a comradery with these artistic luminaries. This is no small consolation for us--we who constantly struggle with auras and feelings of isolation and odd symptoms that resemble psychiatric disease. Blessings upon Eve, in gratitude.