Biography (Cyclopedia of World Authors, Fourth Revised Edition)
Hailed as one of the great clinical writers of the twentieth century, Oliver Wolf Sacks describes in his books the often bizarre worlds of patients trapped by their neurological afflictions. The son of Samuel and Elsie (Landau) Sacks, both of whom were neurologists, Sacks took an early interest in medicine. Reflecting the veneration for the medical field instilled by their parents, two of Sacks’s three brothers also became physicians. Sacks attended Queen’s College, Oxford University, where he earned a master’s degree in biochemistry in 1956. He continued his medical studies at Middlesex Hospital in London until 1960, conducting internships in medicine, surgery, and neurology there. He completed his residency in neurology and neuropathology at the University of California, Los Angeles, in 1965. He has undertaken medical appointments and professorships at many hospitals and research institutions, including the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York, the Bronx Psychiatric Center, New York University School of Medicine, Beth Abraham Hospital, and Mt. Sinai Medical Center, New York, as well as maintaining his own private neurology practice. He has received many honorary degrees and awards, for both his medical and his literary endeavors. Among the latter are the Hawthornden Prize in 1974 for Awakenings; the Harold D. Vursell Memorial Award in 1989 from the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters; the George S. Polk Award (1994), a...
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