In this extraordinary memoir, neuroscientist Andrew Lees explains how William Burroughs, author of Naked Lunch and troubled drug addict, played an unlikely part in his medical career. Lees draws on Burroughs search for an addiction cure to discover a ground-breaking treatment for shaking palsy, and learns how to use the deductive reasoning of Sherlock Holmes to diagnose patients. Lees follows Burroughs into the rainforest and under the influence of yagé (ayahuasca) gains insights that encourage him to pursue new lines of pharmacological research and explore new forms of science.
Available at Notting Hill Editions: http://www.nottinghilleditions.com/authors/andrew-lees/409
Andrew Lees is a Professor of Neurology at the National Hospital, London. He is the recipient of numerous awards including the American Academy of Neurology Life Time Achievement Award, the Association of British Neurologist’s Medal, the Dingebauer Prize for outstanding research and the Gowers Medal. He is one of the three most highly cited Parkinson’s disease researchers in the world. He is the author of several books, including Ray of Hope, runner-up in the William Hill Sports Book of the Year and The Silent Plague.
REVIEW OF Mentored by a Madman: the William Burroughs Experiment
“Mentored by a Madman. The William Burroughs’s Experiment is a fascinating personal account, by one of the world’s leading neurologists, of his quest to find better treatments for Parkinson’s disease. He takes the reader on an extraordinary journey inside and outside the brain, encompassing the commanding heights of academic neurology and the Amazonian Rain Forests. His deep humanity and honesty shines throughout. The inevitable comparison with late, great Oliver Sacks is entirely just. And Lees’ mentor William Burroughs would be well pleased.” – Raymond Tallis