Oliver Sacks, neurologist and author of 'The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat' and 'The Island of the Colorblind' passed away today. He was Professor of Neurology at New York University School of Medicine. His 1973 book 'Awakenings', an autobiographical account of his efforts to help people with encephalitis lethargica regain proper neurological function, was adapted into the Academy Award-nominated film of the same name in 1990 starring Robin Williams and Robert De Niro.
In his most extraordinary book, 'The Man who Mistook His Wife for a Hat', Oliver Sacks recounts the stories of patients lost in the bizarre, apparently inescapable world of neurological disorders. These are case studies of people who have lost their memories and with them the greater part of their pasts; who are no longer able to recognise people or common objects; whose limbs have become alien; who are afflicted and yet are gifted with uncanny artistic or mathematical talents. In Dr Sacks’s splendid and sympathetic telling, each tale is a unique and deeply human study of life struggling against incredible adversity.
Watch his brilliant TED talk below about what hallucination reveals about the mind HERE