Down?s Syndrome The Biography

Author: Chris Nancollas
ISBN: 978-0232528800
Date: 2012
Price: ?12.99 RRP
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Publisher: DLT, London

One curious thing about this book by Chris Nancollas, a retired GP, is its title: Down?s Syndrome The Biography. Unfortunately the author does not explain why his treatment of the ?story of Down?s Syndrome? is biography rather than, say, history or an account. It is left to the reader to surmise that perhaps the book is as much to do with attitudes people have to those with Down?s as it is about the syndrome itself. And this is one issue that some might have with an otherwise clear and accessible book: on the one hand Nancollas successfully avoids presenting a difficult medical or technical account of the syndrome; on the other hand he speaks in an obvious medical tone about people with the condition and their carers as ?patients? and ?sufferers?. Even though Nancollas devotes Chapter 6, entitled ?A Day in the Life? in part to the experience of living with Down?s and the educational challenges it brings, his presentation has the flavour of the detached observations of a medical professional, which of course he is, rather than being really about individuals. Nevertheless, there are some insights in the book that suggest a passionate and involved interest, a recognition that attitudes still need to change, that friendship and loving the other as neighbour is a necessary response.

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