A Family of Doctors

David Hellerstein tells us the story of five generations of a family whose devotion to medicine goes back to the years of the Civil War. It is as well the account of the author’s personal journey to come to terms with his family’s past. At the same time, his affecting personal narrative makes clear how American medicine developed over more than a century from a chaotic, ineffectual craft into a scientific enterprise that routinely performs miracles. Beginning with the middle of the nineteenth century and ending in the present with the author–the son of two doctors and brother of three–A Family of Doctors chronicles the rise of American medicine in all its diversity.

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