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[Xmca-l] A Different Angle



If anyone gets the NY Review of Books there is some news that has not yet
made its way into our discussions or in to the reviews cited.

In the April 23 edition Sacks himself reveals that he is in, and trying to
cope with metastatic melanoma (it's already in the liver).

In the May 21 edition the review the last book again indicates that he has
metastatic cancer and has been give a few months to live.

We can endlessly discuss why this book is different from the ones we know
and love, with the appropriate references to our beloved people.

For me, this book is different because it is framed from the prospect of
dying. It is therefore very autobiographical and there is perhaps nothing
so individualizing as the prospect of dying.

This is an Oliver Sacks we don't know about. It is an Oliver Sacks that he
also didn't know about.

He didn't know about his cancer until recently (see April 23 article by
Sacks on the sharp transition from fully alive to really dying). It has
many of the characteristics of what we've known and loved about his
writings. but this is a very different sort of perspective.

I'm not seeing this last book as a shift in theory, or an outing of sexual
orientation. I see it as the writing of a dear colleague who is grappling
with his end.

Perspectives shift.