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IN BRIEF

Nonfiction

March 07, 1993|KAREN STABINER

HEALING AND THE MIND by Bill Moyers (Doubleday: $25; 369 pp.). This is the companion volume to the recently broadcast PBS series. Moyers and a longtime associate, producer David Grubin, work with poet and professor Betty Sue Flowers, here acting as editor, to present interviews with people involved in expanding our notions about health and healing. The psychiatrist who studies whether a therapy support group improves survival time among metastatic-breast-cancer patients, a research scientist who tracks chemicals that travel between mind and body, the Chinese massage instructor who claims success fighting fibrocystic breast disease where Western remedies have failed--each is a pioneer, traveling uncharted territory (or, in the case of Chinese medicine, familiar roads that Western society regards with some skepticism). This is a fascinating collection of interviews, though the carefully chosen illustrations hardly make up for the absence of the video image; the 90-year-old-plus tai chi instructor Moyers visited in the PBS series was unforgettable. "Healing and the Mind" truly works best as a companion, as a refresher, a reference for those who have seen the television series and want to go back to consider some of the information they received. And perhaps the publisher knows it: Tucked into the book is information on how to order videotapes of the PBS series.

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