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Turn of Mind
A first novel that is both lyrical and shocking.
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"Do no harm." What are the ironies of the surgical amputation of Amanda's fingers?

Created: 05/18/12

Replies: 7

Posted May. 18, 2012 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
admin

Join Date: 10/11/10

Posts: 369

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"Do no harm." What are the ironies of the surgical amputation of Amanda's fingers?

"Do no harm." What are the ironies of the surgical amputation of Amanda's fingers? How can one both mutilate and do good?


Posted May. 22, 2012 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
jww

Join Date: 05/31/11

Posts: 82

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RE: "Do no harm." What are the ironies of the surgical amputation of Amanda's fingers?

The only way for her to retrieve the medal was to remove Amanda's fingers. She could not have just broken them - she was a skilled surgeon after all. Interesting that even tho Amanda was dead, Jennifer wanted to do her best work for her to the point of retrieving her best surgical knife. No plain old kitchen knife for her. And, being dead, no harm was done.


Posted May. 22, 2012 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
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christy

Join Date: 05/22/12

Posts: 41

RE: "Do no harm." What are the ironies of the surgical amputation of Amanda's fingers?

Until we understand the reason behind the amputation of Amanda's fingers it would appear that this is a case of surgical mutilation (aka, "harm"). However, in reality, (ironically) there is no "harm" in such an act. Jennifer respectfully (and surgically appropriately) cut off Amanda's fingers after she was already dead in order to help her daughter's distress over the St. Christopher's necklace clenched in Amanda's death grip.


Posted May. 22, 2012 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
gaili

Join Date: 10/13/11

Posts: 9

RE: "Do no harm." What are the ironies of the surgical amputation of Amanda's fingers?

The irony that she used her surgical skill and surgical tools to precisely amputate the fingers to remove the medal from Amanda's deathgrip rather than mutilate with a kitchen knife seemed to go with Jennifer's love of surgery and wanting to do her best work. She took pride in her work. Her life revolved around her career.


Posted May. 23, 2012 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
jacquelynh

Join Date: 06/14/11

Posts: 34

RE: "Do no harm." What are the ironies of the surgical amputation of Amanda's fingers?

As other reviewers have said I felt the irony was there was no harm in removing the dead Amanda's fingers to retrieve the St. Christopher's metal. Jennifer used her best knife and best surgical techniques to do a job she loved. I doubt that, with her demented mind, that she knew any other way. She probably felt the excellent surgical techniques used was in service to Amanda.


Posted May. 25, 2012 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
dorothyt

Join Date: 04/10/11

Posts: 102

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RE: "Do no harm." What are the ironies of the surgical amputation of Amanda's fingers?

I agree with others that using her surgical skills was Dr. White's way to show respect for Amanda. Of course, it could be that with all her training and practice, she simply knew no other way to do the job.


Posted May. 26, 2012 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
lisag

Join Date: 01/12/12

Posts: 298

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RE: "Do no harm." What are the ironies of the surgical amputation of Amanda's fingers?

I'm interested in the responses of others, as I can't come up with anything aside from what's been said. Mutilating a dead body gives me the shivers but I know you can't technically harm someone who's dead. You can treat the body with respect or disrespect and I'm on the fence as far as how respectful it is to take something from a dead person in this way. It all makes me feel rather nauseous!


Posted May. 30, 2012 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
sweeney

Join Date: 05/24/11

Posts: 32

RE: "Do no harm." What are the ironies of the surgical amputation of Amanda's fingers?

I agree with the others in that there is no harm done to a body...the harm done is in removing the clue that would have truly solved the death.


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