The Diagnosis

The Diagnosis

2.84 (890 ratings by Goodreads)
  • Paperback
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While rushing to work one warm summer morning, Bill Chalmers, a junior executive at a company in Boston, realizes that he cannot remember where he is going or even who he is. Surrounded by other commuters, busily at work with their laptops and dictaphones and columns of numbers, all Bill can remember is the motto of his company: The maximum information in the minimum time. When Bill's memory returns, a strange numbness afflicts him, beginning as a tingling in his hands and gradually spreading over the rest of his body. Over the following months, as he attempts to receive a diagnosis of his illness, he descends into a Kafkaesque nightmare, enduring a blizzard of medical tests and specialists without conclusive results, a desperate wife who decides that he must be imagining his deteriorating condition, and the manic frenzy of his company, where the executives rush to a health club each day at precisely 3.30 for twenty minutes of exercise and relaxation. Playing counterpoint to Bill's story is a gripping narrative about the execution of Socrates, a fictitious Platonic Dialogue conveyed in instalments over the Internet by Metropolitan College Online. Here noise contrasts with silence, mindless speed with thought, emptiness with sensuality as the novel switches back and forth between contemporary America and ancient more

Product details

  • Paperback | 368 pages
  • 111 x 178mm | 217g
  • Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
  • London, United Kingdom
  • Export and UK open market ed
  • 0747556644
  • 9780747556640

About Alan P. Lightman

Alan Lightman was born in Memphis, Tennessee, in 1948 and was educated at Princeton and at the California Institute of Technology. He has written for Granta, Harper's, The New Yorker, and New York Review of Books. His previous books include EINSTEIN'S DREAMS, GOOD BENITO and DANCE FOR TWO. He teaches physics and creative writing at the Massachusetts Institute of more

Rating details

890 ratings
2.84 out of 5 stars
5 7% (62)
4 21% (188)
3 33% (293)
2 28% (246)
1 11% (101)
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