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Collection of generally interesting essays on the body
on 12 July 2013
Anatomies is a set of essays looking at general aspects of anatomy or specific body parts from the point of view of science, medical history, art, culture and society. Each is interestingly written and informative. However the book lacks a level of incisiveness (or incision?) to lift it above the growing mass of general science writing.
If you love reading, then Anatomies may well be something you want to add to your list. Always interesting and informative, it is a somewhat random walk through medical history and the parts of the body, supplemented with art and culture, and a smattering of religion. Fig leaves, for example, are explored in great depth, not only for their very particular artistic design, but also for the bizarre coincidences of history which led to them being deployed in much semi-nude art from the Renaissance onwards.
However, this book has little to lift it above the level of informational entertainment for the already erudite. For me, it is an interesting read but no more than that.