PARIS, France (PRWEB) May 30, 2013
More than the considered diagnoses of the comparatively primitive medical establishment before the twentieth century, the popular rumours, blatant lies and malice attached to historical personalities are “juicier” and easier to believe. Professor Lucien Karhausen successfully attempts to provide a clearer, more humane picture surrounding Wolfgang Amadé Mozart’s death in his work of medico-historical forensics, The Bleeding of Mozart. In the case of the Austrian musical genius, the literature on his death is a virtual industry–Karhausen was able to identify one-hundred forty causes of death in addition to more than eighty-five other conditions, including twenty-seven mental disorders.
An accurate and substantial report on Mozart’s medical history is presented by Karhausen in his book. It is a medical glance on Mozart’s life, illnesses, and personality, based on available documents but in a more critical re-examination. From the cornucopia of illnesses that Karhausen has exhumed and brought to light, it follows that, though some of those are plausible or even probable, and most of them may be of great medical, historical or even musicological interest, only few, maybe one, or maybe none of them can be true, so that most if not all of them are false. Diagnostic inflation, Karhausen relates, springs from “data torturing” and the resulting groundless proliferation of undocumented signs and symptoms. Based on a successful, widely-read paper the professor published in the 2010 Chrismas issue of the British Medical Journal, The Bleeding of Mozart is brilliant literary migration geared towards a wider popular readership.
Wolfgang Amadé Mozart’s divinely inspired genius and his premature death are now part of the Occidental lore. The author provides an engaging look into medical and musical history by providing trenchant and authoritative discussions of issues directly or indirectly related to Mozart’s health, his illnesses and death, and their historiography. By focusing on relevance and rationality, Karhausen sheds the best possible light on the final chapters of one of the most beloved of the world’s musical titans. Mozart actually had a strong constitution and did not suffer from an unusual number of childhood illnesses. One lasting unproven “fact” about Mozart’s health is that his acts were “prompted by desires rooted in the secret privacy of his infancy.” Karhausen engages in an amazing wizardry that takes on “established wisdom” and prejudice, skewering falsities more than two centuries from the event/s. The Bleeding of Mozart “is surely the most illuminated guide,” according to the late world-renowned musicologist H. C. Robbins Landon, on the truth about the death and illnesses of a great cultural light.
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About the Author
Lucien Karhausen is a retired officer of the European Commission. He has held professorships at Brussels and Rome universities.
The Bleeding of Mozart * by Lucien Karhausen
A medical glance on his life, illnesses and personality
Publication Date: January 28, 2011
Trade Paperback; £16.99; 787 pages; 978-1-4568-5076-0
Trade Hardback; £26.99; 787 pages; 978-1-4568-5077-7
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