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Permanent Present Tense: The Unforgettable Life of the Amnesic Patient, H.M. | [Suzanne Corkin]

Permanent Present Tense: The Unforgettable Life of the Amnesic Patient, H.M.

Permanent Present Tense tells the incredible story of Henry Gustav Molaison, known only as H. M. until his death in 2008. In 1953, at the age of 27, Molaison underwent a dangerous "psychosurgical" procedure intended to alleviate his debilitating epilepsy. The surgery went horribly wrong, and when Molaison awoke he was unable to store new experiences. For the rest of his life, he would be trapped in the moment. But Molaison’s tragedy would prove a gift to humanity.
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Publisher's Summary

Permanent Present Tense tells the incredible story of Henry Gustav Molaison, known only as H. M. until his death in 2008. In 1953, at the age of 27, Molaison underwent a dangerous "psychosurgical" procedure intended to alleviate his debilitating epilepsy. The surgery went horribly wrong, and when Molaison awoke he was unable to store new experiences. For the rest of his life, he would be trapped in the moment. But Molaison’s tragedy would prove a gift to humanity.

The amazing specificity of his impairment shed new light on the functions and structures of the human brain, revolutionizing neuroscience. Today, the case of H. M. stands as one of the most consequential and widely referenced in this fast-expanding field.

Renowned neuroscientist Suzanne Corkin worked with Molaison for nearly five decades. In Permanent Present Tense, she tells the full story of his life and legacy, leading her listener to the cutting edge of neuroscience with great clarity, sensitivity, and grace.

©2013 Original material © 2013 Suzanne Corkin. Recorded by arrangement with Basic Books TM, a member of the Perseus Book Group. (P)2013 (p) 2013 HighBridge Company

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  •  
    julie & richard mendel wayne, pa USA 01-25-15
    julie & richard mendel wayne, pa USA 01-25-15 Member Since 2014

    Theodore Roosevelt's "The Man in the Arena" & Raise High the Roof Beam Carpenters: Po Lo's account of the dun-colored mare @deadgametheory

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    ratings
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    "Belongs in a Neuroscience time capsule"
    What made the experience of listening to Permanent Present Tense the most enjoyable?

    The author creates a tribute to a patient she studied over decades, and published it only after his death. The work serves as a beautiful illustration of how much our knowledge of memory has improved in the last 70 years.


    Would you be willing to try another book from Suzanne Corkin? Why or why not?

    Yes, she really presented her subject beautifully, and with respect.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    The patient's unerring grace despite having little recognition of any one person from one day to the next.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    Yes, reminded me of the despair that the movie "Momento" must have felt at times.


    Any additional comments?

    Reminds me very much of listening to Oliver Sacks descriptions of prosopagnosia (inability to recognize faces) or Dr. Kandel's rat mazes at Columbia.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Bill54494 Wisconsin Rapids, WI USA 07-30-13
    Bill54494 Wisconsin Rapids, WI USA 07-30-13 Member Since 2006
    ratings
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    6
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    "Interesting mix of biography and psychology"
    Would you consider the audio edition of Permanent Present Tense to be better than the print version?

    I did not read the print version.


    Which character – as performed by Pam Ward – was your favorite?

    H.M. -- Henry Molaison. Who else?


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    I had moments of laughter and moments of tears.


    Any additional comments?

    While I often got lost in the jargon of psychology and brain physiology, I found this heart-felt depiction of the life and the immense contributions of Henry Molaison to be fascinating and at times very touching.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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