Pernkopf Atlas

Discussion in 'Medical Students - MD' started by hawkwing, May 31, 2008.

  1. hawkwing

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    I recently came across a very nice atlas by someone named Pernkopf at a local second hand bookstore here in Sweden . It had been owned by a german neuro surgeon that died some thirty years ago and is in absolutely superb condition; many of the books even have the original packaging from the german bookstores left.

    I did some searching on the internet and the books seem to have som kind of nazi history. After a closer look at them I found nazi markings at some of the illustrations so that seems to confirm it.

    Does anyone know if the books have any value? I saw some people at ebay trying to sell them for quite high sums. I own all 9 books and they are published between 1937 and 1964. The last two are the ones that mostly resembles an atlas and seems to be a compilation of the first seven. The earlier books contains alot of text that seems to explain the illustrations in them. Only the first four volumes are published before 1945 and thus are the only ones that contains nazi markings.
     
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  3. Yasargil

    Yasargil :\\/\//:

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    Yes there is certainly quite a tainted history with the Pernkopf atlases and rightfully so considering their victims for anatomical display by the National Socialists were executed.

    You have apparently stumbled upon an incredible find for which many would desire to have in their classical medical text collections. It has been said before that the anatomical illustrations are even on par with Versalius.

    Whether these texts should be utilized is a controvesy in and of itself for the sake of the people's bodies that were 'utilized'.
    Quite controversial.

    A treasure for remembrance and education or a reminder of the darkness of mankind.
     
  4. Yasargil

    Yasargil :\\/\//:

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    Value.. wow! They would be undeniably valuable for some and abhorred by others. Prices can vary greatly.
    PM me to keep me up to date on what your plans are with the texts.
     
  5. hawkwing

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    At the moment they are just warming my bookcase. Im thinking about trying to sell them when the dollar is worth something again.

    I actually used the atlas a little this term. The illustrations are far superior to both Netter and Sobotta in my opinion.

    I was suprised to see that the second part of the atlas, printed in 1964, contains quite many nazi markings to. A painter named Lepier seems to have marked all his illustrations with the swastika. I also found illustrations by the same Lepier in my Sobotta atlas which means that quite many medical students are studying with material made by nazis. Here in Sweden for example almost everyone uses Sobotta.
     
  6. Yasargil

    Yasargil :\\/\//:

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    The works of those involved in political terror and death still permeate today with Sobotta's Anatomy (Williams & Wilkins, 1997) as you mention with Erich Lepier.

    The American Library Association's Library Bill of Rights states that these sorts of works should not be excluded because of the origin/background/views of the contributing person, yet I feel that when there are overt symbols, such as Lepier's signature of such hate, then we can still "facilitate informed health care decisions" without such works. We can use Netter's works.

    Historical perspective is one thing while developing the medical training foundation and providing health care is another.

    Please keep me informed as to your plans. I was going to PM you but there was not that option for some reason.
     
  7. cpants

    cpants Member

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    Although the history of the Nazis' victims and the Pernkopf Atlas is tragic, I think it would be a double tragedy to ban the use of the book. By learning from some of the unbelievable illustrations in Pernkopf, some good can come from the suffering of the victims. Some future lives may be saved by the knowledge gained, and exposure to the images and the swastikas is a sobering reminder of the holocaust. Some Jewish groups have come out with positions to this effect regarding the atlas.
     
  8. Yasargil

    Yasargil :\\/\//:

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    That was exceedingly well put. With this perspective gained, as so simply laid out by cpants, I am in agreement.

    Very well stated cpants!
     
  9. bcat85

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    Second. That is horrific that the Pernkopf atlas came about through the murder of jews in europe, but I think it is important to use the information that was gained to make sure that those individuals don't die in vain.
     
  10. hawkwing

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    Does anyone have any idea of where I could sell them? Who would be interested in buying this kind of books?
     
  11. Yasargil

    Yasargil :\\/\//:

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    Someone like me, ie, me, wants to buy those texts. People who collect old, rare texts, or certain texts of interest.
    I like the old medical texts and would love to have the Pernkopf set.
    As for selling them, you could try ebay I guess or mail them to me.:)
     
  12. Doctor J

    Doctor J Libelous.

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    Ebay auction for this atlas is going for $1500!!!! :eek:

    Educating, horrific, but quite a find for the OP.
     

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