Monday, February 11, 2008

Clive Wearing

This is a piece about Clive Wearing, a British former musicologist who lost his memories of his past as well as his ability to remember anything. I did this after reading a New Yorker article about him by Oliver Sacks that focused on a profile of him but which also went in depth into a discussion of the fact that though he has almost no ability to retain information he still remembers his wife and retains his musical talent. More importantly, in playing music he is able to improvise in a piece and riff off an earlier section, which is evidence that there's still some retention going on in his brain, but only while playing. It's possible that those two passionate loves are buried elsewhere in his brain and weren't affected by the affliction that ripped apart the section of his brain responsible for memory.
His case is interesting to say the least and his life even more so. One of the most compelling sections of the article talked about a journal of sorts that he keeps constantly. Because he has no memory, he has the constant perception of just waking up and so he constantly writes this down in his journal. The book is filled with line after line of grand statements like "I am now FULLY awake" or "I have been dead until NOW."

1 comment:

Madiha Jabbar said...

I don't know what to say... But my eyes are wet.