The Doctor: A Novel

Front Cover
Harper Collins, Jul 2, 2002 - Fiction - 384 pages
4 Reviews

So begins The Doctor, a provocative, illuminating novel based on a true story about a brilliant female physician who is compelled to live as a man under the name James Miranda Barry. Patricia Duncker traces Barry's incredible life over the course of five decades and across three continents, from his cross-dressing child genius days to medical school in Edinburgh, Scotland; from his glorious career as a military surgeon to his adventures as a celebrated duelist and social figure known throughout the world.

This richly inventive and entertaining tale of dark family secrets, adultery, and colonial history is a transforming contemplation on the substance of gender, the power of will, and an unforgettable portrait of a brilliant mind.


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Review: The Doctor: A Novel

User Review  - Stefanie Mitchell Ebenal - Goodreads

For me, this book was very much about freedom and how gender, race, and social class affect what choices you can make, what careers you may pursue, and who you may become. I never fell in love with ... Read full review

Review: The Doctor: A Novel

User Review  - Sara Smith - Goodreads

The premise of this book caught my attention--a girl raised as a boy so that she could attend school and become a doctor. However, the flowery style of language that the book was written in was very distracting to me. I would've preferred a more straightforward story. Read full review

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About the author (2002)

Patricia Duncker teaches writing and nineteenth-and twentieth-century literature at the University of Wales, Aberystwyth. She is the author of two previous novels, Hallucinating Foucault, which won Dillon's First Fiction Award and the McKitterick Prize for best first novel, and The Doctor, as well as a collection of stories, Monsieur Shoushana's Lemon Trees.

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