Hairy Ticks of Dune

There's only room enough in this stillsuit for one of us! ... Wait, come back!

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Pathological, I mean, medical phraseology?

That "PhD Dune scholar" we've been hearing about is, in fact, none other than good ole Dr. Attila Torkos, M.D., of the Otorhinolaryngology and Head-Neck Surgery Department of the University of Szeged, in the city of the same name in Hungary.

I have this straight from the horse's...mouth, as it were.

From: Kevin J Anderson
Date: May 10, 2007 7:56 PM
Subject: RE: RE: mysterious Omphalos
Body: ...

Is Dr. Torkos then the person you were referring to when you wrote "a PhD Dune scholar" in your answers to the email interview questions?


I haven't yet been able to track down any biographical information on the Good Doctor, but it seems from some of the publication titles that I have been able to find that he is the real McCoy, an actual ENT specialist. Or at least, that he started out as one. Many of the fictional universe chronologies that he has prepared over the years are being hosted on his department's webserver, but I have yet to find an index page linking to them. No faculty info page for the Doctor, either.

I'm sorry—and this reflects in no way on Dr. Torkos or the work he has obviously put into his...hobby? new speciality?—but the way Kevin phrased this is just wrong. True, Dr. Torkos has a Ph.D. And true, he has obviously studied the Dune novels extensively. But I wouldn't put him in the same group of scholars as literature studies researchers like those listed recently by Omphalos on the DN BBS. His specialty isn't literature and he does not work exclusively on the Dune universe. To call him a "PhD Dune scholar" is a very pretty piece of obfuscation.

But then, by this point I expect nothing else.

(I needn't say "I told you so", do I?)


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