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Richard Gordon was born in 1921. He has been an anaesthetist at St. Bartholomew's Hospital,


ship's surgeon and an assistant editor of the British Medical Journal. He left medical practice in 1952 and

started writing his "Doctor" series.

"Doctor in the House" is one of Gordon's twelve "Doctor" books and is noted for witty description of a

medical student's years of professional train


To a medical student the final examinations are something like death: an unpleasant

inevitability to be faced sooner or later, one's state after which is determined by care

Spent in pre

Paring for the event.

An examination is nothing

more than an investigation of a man's knowledge,

Conducted in a way that the authorities have found the most fair and convenient to both

Sides. But the medi

Cal student cannot see it in this light. Examinations touch off his

Fighting spirit; they are a straight contest between himself and the examiners, conducted

On well-established rules for both, and he goes at them like a prize-fighter.

There is rarely any frank cheating in medical examinations, but the candidates spend

Almost as much time over the techni

Cal details of the contest as they do learning general

Medicine from their textbooks.

Benskin discovered that Malcolm Maxworth was the St. Swithin's representative on

The examining Committee and thenceforward we attended all his ward rounds, standing at

The front and gazing at him like impressionable music enthusiasts at the solo violinist.

Meanwhile, we despondently ticked the days off the calendar, swotted up the spot

Questions, and ran a final breathless sprint down the well-trodden paths of medicine.

The examination began with the written papers. A single in


Sat in his gown and

Hood on a raised platform to keep an eye open for flagrant cheating. He was helped by

Two or three uniformed porters who stood by the door and looked dispassionately down at

The poor victims, like the policemen that flank the dock at the Old Bailey.

Three hours were allowed for the paper. About half-way through the anonymous

Examinees began to differentiate them

Selves. Some of them strode up for an extra answer

Book, with an awkward expression of self-consciousness and superiority in their faces.

Others rose to their feet, handed in their papers and left. Whether these people were so

Brilliant they were able to complete the examination in an hour and a half or whether this

Was the time required for them to set down unhurriedly their entire knowledge of

Medicine was never apparent from the nonchalant air with which they left the room. The

Invigilator tapped his bell half an hour before time; the last question was rushed through,

Then the porters began tearing papers away from gentlemen dissatisfied with the period

Allowed for them to express themselves and hoping by an incomplete sentence to give the

Examiners the impression of frustrated brilliance.


walked down the stairs feeling as if I had just finished an eight-round fight. In the

Date: 2016-01-03; view: 1584

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