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Memoir of a Thinking Radish

by Sir Peter Medawar

ISBN 0192177370 / 9780192177377 / 0-19-217737-0
Publisher Oxford University Press, USA
Language English
Edition Hardcover
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Book summary

"He's tart, tough-minded, terribly British...an imposing grand master of aphorism, argument and lightning-bolt one-liners." So Newsweek writer wrote of Sir Peter Medawar, the renowned British immunologist. "The most accomplished writer of popular-science essays," declared the Philadelphia Inquirer. Now this Nobel Prize-winning scientist and highly acclaimed author of Pluto's Republic, Aristotle to Zoos, and many other books has written a fascinating account of his own life.

The image of man as a cross between Pascal's "thinking reed" and Falstaff's "forked radish," expressed in the title of Sir Peter's autobiography, stems from his humble desire "not to claim for myself as an author any distinction more extravagant than membership of the human race." But it is an exceptional life that unfolds in the pages of this incisive and witty memoir. Sir Peter describes his early years in Rio de Janiero, "the rude and barbaric life of Marlborough," Oxford in 1930s, his illnesses and recovery, and the rewards and frustrations of work in a wide variety of academic institutions around the world. Rich anecdotes abound--his early school days and family life, his musical education, his wife Jean and their family, his frequent visits to America, and much more. A sheer delight to read, this highly personal account illuminates the life of one of the most engaging and impressive men of out time.

About the Author:

Sir Peter Medawar won the 1960 Nobel Prize for Medicine. He is a Fellow of the British Academy and author of several volumes of scientific essays.

The Noble Prizewinner reminisces about his dual career in the worlds of science and letters [via]