The Man in the Red Coat

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From the Man Booker Prize-winning author of The Sense of an Ending--a rich, witty, revelatory tour of Belle Époque Paris, via the remarkable life story of the pioneering surgeon, Samuel Pozzi.

In the summer of 1885, three Frenchmen arrived in London for a few days' intellectual shopping: a prince, a count, and a commoner with an Italian name. In time, each of these men would achieve a certain level of renown, but who were they then and what was the significance of their sojourn to England? Answering these questions, Julian Barnes unfurls the stories of their lives which play out against the backdrop of the Belle Époque in Paris. Our guide through this world is Samuel Pozzi, the society doctor, free-thinker and man of science with a famously complicated private life who was the subject of one of John Singer Sargent's greatest portraits. In this vivid tapestry of people (Henry James, Sarah Bernhardt, Oscar Wilde, Proust, James Whistler, among many others), place, and time, we see not merely an epoch of glamour and pleasure, but, surprisingly, one of violence, prejudice, and nativism--with more parallels to our own age than we might imagine. The Man in the Red Coat is, at once, a fresh portrait of the Belle Époque; an illuminating look at the longstanding exchange of ideas between Britain and France; and a life of a man who lived passionately in the moment but whose ideas and achievements were far ahead of his time.
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About the author

JULIAN BARNES is the author of twenty-three previous books, for which he has received the Man Booker Prize, the Somerset Maugham Award, the Geoffrey Faber Memorial Prize, the David Cohen Prize for Literature, and the E. M. Forster Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters; the French Prix Médicis and Prix Femina; the Austrian State Prize for European Literature. In 2004 he was named Commandeur de l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres by the French Ministry of Culture. His work has been translated into more than forty languages. He lives in London.
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Additional Information

Publisher
Knopf
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Published on
Feb 18, 2020
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Pages
288
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ISBN
9780525658788
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Features
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Language
English
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Genres
Biography & Autobiography / Historical
History / Europe / France
History / Modern / 19th Century
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Eligible for Family Library

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In 1953 the name of Dr Henry Price was catapulted across the headlines of Australian newspapers. A post World War II German - Jewish immigrant, he made legal and medical history by taking to court eleven Australian doctors on charges of defamation, conspiracy and libel.

The case, heard in the growing industrial town of Wollongong in southern New South Wales, was the last of many battles with officialdom and oppressive forces that punctuated the adventures of Henry Price throughout his extraordinarily eventful life.

Born "Hans Preiss" in German Upper Silesia in 1904 he trained as a doctor in the universities of Berlin, Vienna and other major cities at a time when German medicine led the world in discoveries and research. But his great pride in being Jewish-and his refusal to deny his origins forced him to escape Germany in 1933, soon after the Nazis began to rise to power. Changing his name to "Henri Preiss", he headed for the gay streets of Paris and from there found his way to French-administered Lebanon, eventually to be accepted into elite Beirut society.

After one unsuccessful marriage, he had no sooner found happiness with his new wife Ursula when Britain and France went to war against Germany, and he was whisked away to a concentration camp - his crime that of being German. His release was gained on the condition that he join the notorious French Foreign Legion! Following the fall of France he spent several years as a Medical Officer with the British Army in the Middle East until finally, after the war, he decided to bring his family to Australia.

Hoping to find freedom in this new country of his choice, he instead found echoes of the prejudices that had plagued him in the past.

But Henry Price was a fighter, and this enthralling biography gives not only a compassionate insight into the plight of people of minority groups but also an indictment of the lack of understanding and tolerance that is still evident in parts of Australian society today.
'Doc has delivered my two greatest joys, Ranbir and Riddhima,' says actress Neetu Singh. 'I am most comfortable with him and will not go to any other doctor.' Thousands of women feel the same way. For Dr R.P. Soonawala is the doctor extraordinaire - an expert gynaecologist, a skilled surgeon and the gentlest of people. Growing up as the third son of a Parsi doctor in 1930s' Bombay, the young RP was more interested in sprinting and tennis than his studies. Between playing pranks on friends and dating the gorgeous Piloo, whom he would later marry, the young man's life skipped merrily from his Navjot ceremony at seven to early training in medicine. The turning point came when he witnessed the gruesome abortions performed by mercenary doctors in an era when Medically Terminated Pregnancy was illegal in India. Deciding to change that, Dr Soonawala set about devising a new Intra-Uterine Contraceptive Device that would empower women to plan their pregnancy. He would receive the Von Graffenberg Medal from the University of Kiel in 1984, and the Padma Shri in 1991 for his extraordinary innovation. Today, at eighty-six, Dr Soonawala is as active as ever. He is Chairman, Ob-Gyn, at Max Healthcare, and on the governing board of Ajeenkya D.Y. Patil University. His disarming humility and infectious humour continue to charm his friends and patients. Firmly putting behind him the media's unfair allegations at the time of Smita Patil's untimely death, he has gone on to deliver generations of Ambanis and Kapoors, as also Varun Gandhi and Laloo Prasad Yadav's grandchildren. Noted writer Rashmi Uday Singh puts together five years of interviews with the doctor and his family to produce this biography of the man who changed the face of obstetrics and gynaecology in India.
Winner, 2018 PEN/E.O. Wilson Prize for Literary Science Writing
Short-listed for the 2018 Wellcome Book Prize
A Top 10 Science Book of Fall 2017, Publishers Weekly
A Best History Book of 2017, The Guardian

"Warning: She spares no detail!" —Erik Larson, bestselling author of Dead Wake

In The Butchering Art, the historian Lindsey Fitzharris reveals the shocking world of nineteenth-century surgery and shows how it was transformed by advances made in germ theory and antiseptics between 1860 and 1875. She conjures up early operating theaters—no place for the squeamish—and surgeons, who, working before anesthesia, were lauded for their speed and brute strength. These pioneers knew that the aftermath of surgery was often more dangerous than patients’ afflictions, and they were baffled by the persistent infections that kept mortality rates stubbornly high. At a time when surgery couldn’t have been more hazardous, an unlikely figure stepped forward: a young, melancholy Quaker surgeon named Joseph Lister, who would solve the riddle and change the course of history.

Fitzharris dramatically reconstructs Lister’s career path to his audacious claim that germs were the source of all infection and could be countered by a sterilizing agent applied to wounds. She introduces us to Lister’s contemporaries—some of them brilliant, some outright criminal—and leads us through the grimy schools and squalid hospitals where they learned their art, the dead houses where they studied, and the cemeteries they ransacked for cadavers.

Eerie and illuminating, The Butchering Art celebrates the triumph of a visionary surgeon whose quest to unite science and medicine delivered us into the modern world.

Lancaster and York. For much of the fifteenth century, these two families were locked in battle for control of the British monarchy. Kings were murdered and deposed. Armies marched on London. Old noble names were ruined while rising dynasties seized power and lands. The war between the royal House of Lancaster and York, the longest and most complex in British history, profoundly altered the course of the monarchy. In The Wars of the Roses, Alison Weir reconstructs this conflict with the same dramatic flair and impeccable research that she brought to her highly praised The Princes in the Tower.

The first battle erupted in 1455, but the roots of the conflict reached back to the dawn of the fifteenth century, when the corrupt, hedonistic Richard II was sadistically murdered, and Henry IV, the first Lancastrian king, seized England's throne. Both Henry IV and his son, the cold warrior Henry V, ruled England ably, if not always wisely--but Henry VI proved a disaster, both for his dynasty and his kingdom. Only nine months old when his father's sudden death made him king, Henry VI became a tormented and pathetic figure, weak, sexually inept, and prey to fits of insanity. The factional fighting that plagued his reign escalated into bloody war when Richard Plantagenet, Duke of York, laid claim to the throne that was rightfully his--and backed up his claim with armed might.

Alison Weir brings brilliantly to life both the war itself and the historic figures who fought it on the great stage of England. Here are the queens who changed history through their actions--the chic, unconventional Katherine of Valois, Henry V's queen; the ruthless, social-climbing Elizabeth Wydville; and, most crucially, Margaret of Anjou, a far tougher and more powerful character than her husband,, Henry VI, and a central figure in the Wars of the Roses.

Here, too, are the nobles who carried the conflict down through the generations--the Beauforts, the bastard descendants of John of Gaunt, Richard Neville, Earl of Warwick, known to his contemporaries as "the Kingmaker"; and the Yorkist King, Edward IV, a ruthless charmer who pledged his life to cause the downfall of the House of Lancaster.

The Wars of the Roses is history at its very best--swift and compelling, rich in character, pageantry, and drama, and vivid in its re-creation of an astonishing, dangerous, and often grim period of history. Alison Weir, one of the foremost authorities on the British royal family, demonstrates here that she is also one of the most dazzling stylists writing history today.
The #1 bestseller that tells the remarkable story of the generations of American artists, writers, and doctors who traveled to Paris, the intellectual, scientific, and artistic capital of the western world, fell in love with the city and its people, and changed America through what they learned, told by America’s master historian, David McCullough.

Not all pioneers went west.

In The Greater Journey, David McCullough tells the enthralling, inspiring—and until now, untold—story of the adventurous American artists, writers, doctors, politicians, and others who set off for Paris in the years between 1830 and 1900, hungry to learn and to excel in their work. What they achieved would profoundly alter American history.

Elizabeth Blackwell, the first female doctor in America, was one of this intrepid band. Another was Charles Sumner, whose encounters with black students at the Sorbonne inspired him to become the most powerful voice for abolition in the US Senate. Friends James Fenimore Cooper and Samuel F. B. Morse worked unrelentingly every day in Paris, Morse not only painting what would be his masterpiece, but also bringing home his momentous idea for the telegraph. Harriet Beecher Stowe traveled to Paris to escape the controversy generated by her book, Uncle Tom’s Cabin. Three of the greatest American artists ever—sculptor Augustus Saint-Gaudens, painters Mary Cassatt and John Singer Sargent—flourished in Paris, inspired by French masters.

Almost forgotten today, the heroic American ambassador Elihu Washburne bravely remained at his post through the Franco-Prussian War, the long Siege of Paris, and the nightmare of the Commune. His vivid diary account of the starvation and suffering endured by the people of Paris is published here for the first time.

Telling their stories with power and intimacy, McCullough brings us into the lives of remarkable men and women who, in Saint-Gaudens’ phrase, longed “to soar into the blue.
A masterpiece of historical adventure, Skeletons on the Zahara chronicles the true story of twelve American sailors who were shipwrecked off the coast of Africa in 1815, captured by desert nomads, sold into slavery, and subjected to a hellish two-month journey through the perilous heart of the Sahara.
The western Sahara is a baking hot and desolate place, home only to nomads and their camels, and to locusts, snails and thorny scrub--and its barren and ever-changing coastline has baffled sailors for centuries. In August 1815, the US brig Commerce was dashed against Cape Bojador and lost, although through bravery and quick thinking the ship's captain, James Riley, managed to lead all of his crew to safety. What followed was an extraordinary and desperate battle for survival in the face of human hostility, starvation, dehydration, death and despair.
Captured, robbed and enslaved, the sailors were dragged and driven through the desert by their new owners, who neither spoke their language nor cared for their plight. Reduced to drinking urine, flayed by the sun, crippled by walking miles across burning stones and sand and losing over half of their body weights, the sailors struggled to hold onto both their humanity and their sanity. To reach safety, they would have to overcome not only the desert but also the greed and anger of those who would keep them in captivity.
From the cold waters of the Atlantic to the searing Saharan sands, from the heart of the desert to the heart of man, Skeletons on the Zahara is a spectacular odyssey through the extremes and a gripping account of courage, brotherhood, and survival.
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