Currents and Counter-currents in Medical Science
Truby King Collection W9 HR16
Boston: Ticknor and Fields
Physician and poet Oliver Wendell Holmes (1809-1894) studied under the Parisian pathologist Pierre Louis, who followed the méthode expectante, a therapeutic doctrine that states the physician’s role is to do everything possible to aid nature in the process of disease recovery, and to do nothing to hinder this natural process. Holmes unsettled medico feathers by criticising traditional medical practices and wrote – as shown here – that if all contemporary medicine was tossed into the sea ‘it would be all the better for mankind,—and all the worse for the fishes’. His no-nonsense approach was something that attracted Truby King, who has here noted various passages from Currents and Counter-currents in Medical Science. King also thoroughly enjoyed reading the poet’s The Autocrat of the Breakfast Table.
Oliver Wendell Holmes, “Currents and Counter-currents in Medical Science,” ourheritage.ac.nz | OUR Heritage, accessed June 4, 2023, https://otago.ourheritage.ac.nz/items/show/9436.