Being Mortal: Illness, Medicine and What Matters in the End

Gawande, Atul

Published by Profile Books, 2014
ISBN 10: 1846685818 / ISBN 13: 9781846685811
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New York Times Number One bestseller
Longlisted for the Samuel Johnson Prize 2014

In Being Mortal, Gawande examines his experiences as a surgeon, as he confronts the realities of aging and dying in his patients and in his family, as well as the limits of what he can do. And he emerges with story that crosses the globe and history, exploring questions that range from the curious to the profound: What happens to people's teeth as they get old? Did human beings really commit senecide, the sacrifice of the elderly? Why do the aged so dread nursing homes and hospitals? How should someone give another person the dreadful news that they will die?

This is a story told only as Atul Gawande can - penetrating people's lives and also the systems that have evolved to govern our mortality. Those systems, he observes, routinely fail to serve - or even acknowledge - people's needs and priorities beyond mere survival. And the consequences are devastating lives, families, and even whole economies. But, as he reveals, it doesn't have to be this way.

Atul Gawande has delivered an engrossing tale of science, history and remarkable characters in the vein of Oliver Sacks.

Published in partnership with the Wellcome Collection.

WELLCOME COLLECTION is the free museum and library for the incurably curious. It explores the connections between medicine, life and art in the past, present and future. It is part of Wellcome, a global charitable foundation that exists to improve health for everyone by helping great ideas thrive.

Review: A deeply affecting, urgently important book -- one not just about dying and the limits of medicine, but about living to the last with autonomy, dignity and joy. (Katherine Boo, author of Behind the Beautiful Forevers)

Medicine, Being Mortal reminds us, has prepared itself for life but not for death. This is Atul Gawande's most powerful, and moving, book (Malcolm Gladwell)

In this eloquent, moving book Atul Gawande ... explains how and why modern medicine has turned the end of life into something so horrible ... Many passages in "Being Mortal" will bring a lump to the throat, but Dr Gawande also visits places offering a better way to manage life's end (Economist 2014-10-04)

We have come to medicalize aging, frailty and death, treating them as if they were just one more medical problem to overcome. It is not just medicine that is needed in one's declining years, but life -a life with meaning, a life as rich and full as possible under the circumstances. Being Mortal is not only wise and deeply moving; it is an essential and insightful book for our times, as one would expect from Atul Gawande, one of our finest physician writers. (Oliver Sacks)

... it is rare to read a book that sparks so much hard thinking. In my case, it has opened to door to discussions with close relatives about how they wish to spend their final days - conversations that we should surely all be having, however difficult they are to start (Linda Geddes Nature 2014-10-09)

Gawande is hoping to change the medical profession, not human nature, and to do so in a way that is important to us all. His book is so impressive that one can believe that it may well contribute to that end... May it be widely read and inwardly digested (Diana Athill Financial Times 2014-10-17)

Dr Gawande writes very well, his book Is deeply humane and I learnt much from it (Theodor Dalrymple Times 2014-10-18)

Atul Gawande's wise and courageous book raises the questions that none of us wants to think about...Gawande's concern and dedication shine from every page... that alliance of human feeling with medical knowledge aptly symbolises this remarkable book (Peter Carey Sunday Times 2014-10-19)

There is an extraordinary ethical tone to this book and it's a tone that increases and magnifies ... I was in floods of tears, it was so beautifully told. I think this is such an important book.... Everyone needs to read this book (Alex Preston Saturday Review BBC Radio 4 2014-10-18)

a book that everyone should read (Razia Iqbal Saturday Review BBC Radio 4 2014-10-18)

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Being Mortal: Illness, Medicine and What ...
Publisher: Profile Books
Publication Date: 2014
Binding: Hardcover
Book Condition: Good

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