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April 1, 1968


JAMA. 1968;204(1):65. doi:10.1001/jama.1968.03140140067017

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The "Book Number" is perhaps a misnomer. It does, indeed, deal with books and things bookish, but in the last few years the emphasis has gotten away from the contemporary publications and become more and more centered on books of the past— what they teach us about the present and what universal message they might have. We have tried to present a literary dimension of medicine applicable not only to the present but also to the past. With this, our fifth issue, we come to what may be a parting of ways.

Although last year we expressed the earnest hope that physicians would send us suitable studies of the literary aspects of medicine, the response was miniscule. Apart from poetry—for which the response was quite overwhelming, as discussed in another editorial—only two or three manuscripts were spontaneously submitted. The great majority of articles in this issue were solicited by the