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February 1964

Medical Teaching in Western Civilization.

Arch Intern Med. 1964;113(2):308-309. doi:10.1001/archinte.1964.00280080144037

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This volume is interestingly constructed of excerpts from various authors tied together with a minimal thread of narrative. The quotations vary in length from the first, of a line and a half from Pindar, mentioning Aesculapius, to 59 pages from Theodor Billroth's The Medical Sciences in the German Universities. Abraham Flexner is quoted through 55 pages; I. Snapper is allotted 21, and Richard Bright 16, pages. Consequently, more than half the text consists of extracts from four writers only.

The use of long extracts from four authors has led, inevitably, to neglect of key personalities in medical education. Dr. Wartman in the preface attempts to forestall such judgment: "No doubt my choices here will not please all readers, but I hope they will understand the necessity for making choices and forgive neglect of their favorites." Had he spent more time in searching for, studying, and sifting sources, he would have

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