I finished reading the book My Lobotomy by Howard Dully and Charles Fleming today. The book is a memoir of Mr. Dully’s lobotomy at the age of twelve years. It is a moving account of his attempt to learn why he had been subjected to this surgery. He wanted to know if his lifelong feelings of inadequacy were merited or built on fallacy. Throughout the book, the reader learns of his life both pre and post surgery. Mr. Dully has done a fine job of presenting his narrative in an easy to follow chronological order.
At the back of the book in two sections titled “One Last Word” and “Afterword to the Paperback Edition”, we are made privy to more recent discoveries regarding Howard Dully and the extent of the damage to his brain. What has been evident from the first chapter, though, is Mr. Dully’s inner stamina. That stamina brought him to the point of championing, as the child of one lobotomy patient put it, lobotomized patients and their families.
In My Lobotomy, Howard Dully offers the reader a hard and honest look at his life and his heart. He does not use this book as a means to berate either his family or the doctor who performed the surgery, but rather as a way to finally understand what happened and why. It is an enlightening account of a medical procedure that is foreign to the majority. I recommend My Lobotomy to anyone interested in human behavior and the human brain.
Note: First posted on May 13, 2010.