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August 1958

Anatomies of Pain

AMA Arch NeurPsych. 1958;80(2):195. doi:10.1001/archneurpsyc.1958.02340080065013

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Pain, disease, the mind, and the nervous system are the topics of this book. Beginning with the beliefs and customs of primitive and ancient peoples, the author achieves a broad historical synthesis by weaving the dominant theme of pain and its mechanisms into a background of evolving concepts of disease and nervous system function. While the large scope allows of frequent opportunity for discussion, qualification, and elaboration by the historical specialist, the broad outlines are undistorted. It is a fascinating story, a scholarly work, and a valuable addition to the library of those concerned with these topics.

The presentation of the contemporary period is the least lucid section of the book, reflecting perhaps the present lack of unanimity as regards even some of the fundamental concepts of pain mechanisms. For example, at about the same time that this book dealing with the anatomy of pain was published, a review article