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Henry Marsh on 'War and Peace'

Neurosurgeon and writer Henry Marsh on the influence of the epic novel. 'My life might easily have careered off in an entirely different direction if it had not been for Tolstoy'.

Neurosurgeon and writer Henry Marsh on how "War and Peace" by Leo Tolstoy began a teenage love affair with all things Russian. "I burned the plastic coating off my NHS spectacle frames to reveal the revolutionary intellectual steel inside. And bought a young Communist League badge which I could wear on my black polo neck pullover." Marsh later drove across Europe to begin the first of many stints as a volunteer surgeon in Ukraine. "My life might easily have careered off in an entirely different direction if it had not been for Tolstoy," he says.

Producer Smita Patel
Editor Hugh Levinson.

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The Book that Changed Me

The Book that Changed Me

Five figures from the arts and science introduce books that changed their lives and work.

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