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Fiction

The subject beneath the object

In 1990, a group of medical researchers theorised that Vincent van Gogh suffered from Ménière’s disease, rather than epilepsy. Ménière’s disease is an inner-ear disorder, causing vertigo and a fullness of the ear that leads to constant noise – something equivalent to listening to a seashell. Hearing loss occurs and worsens over time. Many sufferers will experience a ‘full-blown attack’, sometimes a series of them, in which they perceive the world as violently spinning for hours on end, the noise in their ear reaching an extreme level. Though I have found no validity in the theory after much research on Van Gogh (nor can I find anyone else who supports this theory), I can, and do, imagine what it might have meant.

 

THEY’RE CONSTANTLY FIGHTING these days. The weather is maybe to blame, having driven them indoors so that they’re together more than what’s natural for any two people, easy to fall... Read more

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From Griffith Review Edition 58: Storied Lives – The Novella Project V © Copyright Griffith University & the author.

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