The CHP recently took over management of a popular website from Malcolm Macmillan, author of the award-winning book An Odd Kind of Fame: Stories of Phineas Gage (MIT Press, 2000). Macmillan is widely known as an expert on the story of Phineas Gage.
The site, originally created by Macmillan in 1999, details the famous nineteenth-century case of Phineas Gage. In 1848, Gage, a railway construction foreman suffered severe brain damage when a large iron rod was driven through his skull as a result of an explosion on the work site. The rod passed through Gage’s left cheek and exited his skull, destroying most of the left frontal area of his brain. Amazingly, Gage survived the accident, returning home after only 10 weeks of treatment.
As Macmillan notes, most accounts of Gage’s life after the accident “are strange mixtures of slight fact, considerable fancy and downright fabrication.” In his book and on the website, Macmillan examines these stories and dispels common myths about Gage. He also delves into some interesting questions about Gage after the accident. What did Gage do after the accident? How did he adapt to his injuries? Exactly what parts of Gage’s brain were damaged? The popular site, rich with historic images and documents, sheds light on these questions.
The site, available here, will be hosted and edited by the Center in collaboration with Macmillan.
Each year, the Emerald Literati Network rewards the efforts of authors of articles that represent an outstanding contribution to Emerald journals and to the body of knowledge itself. CHP staff Jodi Kearns and Rhonda Rinehart were awarded the 2012 Highly Commended Award for the article "Personal Ontological Information Responsibility" published in Library Review last year. The article examines how librarians and archivists view their own roles and responsibilities and examines the commonly held view that the two roles involve very distinct responsibilities.