For the nonscientist, an exceptionally readable—that is, both entertaining and enlightening—presentation of what is now known about how psychological and emotional states influence physical health and are in turn affected by it. A professor of behavioral biology in England, Martin deftly steers a clear path between what he calls the “Cavaliers of mind-body interactions,” who uncritically accept the notion that the mind is the source of most bodily ills, and the “Roundhead sceptics,” who dismiss the mind-body connection as pseudoscience, labeling that may have more resonance for his countrymen than for American readers. He presents evidence to show that what goes on in people’s minds really does affect their chances of becoming ill or dying, and he examines just how mind and body interact. The mind, he explains, can influence health indirectly by making us believe we are ill and by altering the way we behave, and more directly, by influencing our immune system’s defenses. He also relates what research is beginning to uncover about what the immune system can do to the mind. Specifically, Martin looks at the mind-body connection in two major killers, heart disease and cancer, examining the roles played by psychological stress, personality type, and social relationships. He dismisses the motion that cancer can be cured by positive thinking or by guided mental imagery, calling these techniques “latter-day miracle cures” promoted by “New Age gurus.” To illustrate his points, Martin cleverly draws on fictional characters, from Dr. Pangloss in Voltaire’s Candide and Willy Loman in Arthur Miller’s Death of a Salesman to Basil Fawlty of television’s Fawlty Towers. In his closing chapter, Martin describes how evolutionary medicine, which applies Darwinian theory to the problems of medicine, asking “How did this develop?”instead of “How does this work?”, offers a new perspective on the complex connections between mind, body, and disease. A clear-headed survey of a muddy field.

Pub Date: Aug. 29, 1998

ISBN: 0-312-18664-9

Page Count: 384

Publisher: Dunne/St. Martin's

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 15, 1998

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis...



Privately published by Strunk of Cornell in 1918 and revised by his student E. B. White in 1959, that "little book" is back again with more White updatings.

Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis (whoops — "A bankrupt expression") a unique guide (which means "without like or equal").

Pub Date: May 15, 1972

ISBN: 0205632645

Page Count: 105

Publisher: Macmillan

Review Posted Online: Oct. 28, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 1972

Did you like this book?



Noted jazz and pop record producer Thiele offers a chatty autobiography. Aided by record-business colleague Golden, Thiele traces his career from his start as a ``pubescent, novice jazz record producer'' in the 1940s through the '50s, when he headed Coral, Dot, and Roulette Records, and the '60s, when he worked for ABC and ran the famous Impulse! jazz label. At Coral, Thiele championed the work of ``hillbilly'' singer Buddy Holly, although the only sessions he produced with Holly were marred by saccharine strings. The producer specialized in more mainstream popsters like the irrepressibly perky Teresa Brewer (who later became his fourth wife) and the bubble-machine muzak-meister Lawrence Welk. At Dot, Thiele was instrumental in recording Jack Kerouac's famous beat- generation ramblings to jazz accompaniment (recordings that Dot's president found ``pornographic''), while also overseeing a steady stream of pop hits. He then moved to the Mafia-controlled Roulette label, where he observed the ``silk-suited, pinky-ringed'' entourage who frequented the label's offices. Incredibly, however, Thiele remembers the famously hard-nosed Morris Levy, who ran the label and was eventually convicted of extortion, as ``one of the kindest, most warm-hearted, and classiest music men I have ever known.'' At ABC/Impulse!, Thiele oversaw the classic recordings of John Coltrane, although he is the first to admit that Coltrane essentially produced his own sessions. Like many producers of the day, Thiele participated in the ownership of publishing rights to some of the songs he recorded; he makes no apology for this practice, which he calls ``entirely appropriate and without any ethical conflicts.'' A pleasant, if not exactly riveting, memoir that will be of most interest to those with a thirst for cocktail-hour stories of the record biz. (25 halftones, not seen)

Pub Date: May 1, 1995

ISBN: 0-19-508629-4

Page Count: 224

Publisher: Oxford Univ.

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 1995

Did you like this book?