Penguin £8.99 (290pp) from the Independent Bookshop: 08430 600 030
Tormented Hope, By Brian Dillon
Friday 02 July 2010
This eloquent and incisive book about the uses of acute hypochondria takes as its focus nine noble minds trapped in bodies they treated as treacherous enemies.
From Charlotte Brontë's nervous anguish and Charles Darwin's nameless, over-treated crises to Andy Warhol's Aids-related dreads and Glenn Gould's blend of "self-medication and self-neglect", the imaginary wounds of Dillon's subjects seem inseparable from the great works they undertook.
Without glib formulae, he makes a firm case for the "intimate link between their health anxieties and their creative or intellectual labours". A poignant afterword reflects on Michael Jackson and the split between his "two bodies": one kingly, the other "frightened, sick, addicted and hurt".
Geoffrey Macnab reviews American Hustle, also starring Christian Bale and Bradley Cooper
elephant appealThe first 23 lots in our charity auction have now gone. But there are 22 more still up for grabs
newsFormer soldier taped 33 of the animals to the floor and then stamped on them one by one
Michelle Nijhuis' daughter insists (s)he is, and she learnt a valuable lesson on gender in books
news Opponents claim it would stop performers such as Beyonce and Madonna appearing on TV
It takes a platoon of chefs, litres of brandy and rum, and almost 100kg of dried fruit
newsThat most ancient of crimes is on the rise, threatening farmers' livelihoods, community trust – and human health
food + drink
sportIf you thought the London Olympics and Wiggins' Tour glory made last year best, don't forget Murray's Wimbledon win and Farah's double
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 America's 'virgin births'? One in 200 mothers 'became pregnant without having sex'
- 2 North Koreans are gasping for the truth: Let's give it to them
- 3 Sun will 'flip upside down' within weeks, says Nasa
- 4 Christmas comes early: Justin Bieber is 'retiring from music'
- 5 Iain Duncan Smith leaves Commons food banks debate early
- < Previous
- Next >