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October 1943

The Art of Seeing.

Arch Ophthalmol. 1943;30(4):582-583. doi:10.1001/archopht.1943.00880220174020

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Aldous Huxley had bilateral keratitis at the age of 16 which left him with greatly reduced vision. As is common in such cases, his sight improved towards middle life. After he had become an ardent devotee of the Bates method of visual training his vision improved so that it was "twice as good as before." To repay a debt of gratitude to his benefactor and to make his art more widely known, Huxley has ventured into medical literature and written a book—The Art of Seeing.

Bates's hypothesis is, of course, well known to the medical profession : visual derangements and refractive errors are due to a deformation of the eyeball by a condition of nervous and muscular strain in the extra-ocular muscles; for this reason, according to Bates, the refraction may change "a dozen times or more in a second," if a child tells a lie, and so on. According

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