The Captain of All These Men of Death by Alejandro Morales

The Captain of All These Men of Death by Alejandro Morales


When Roberto Contreras attempts to enlist to fight in World War II, his medical examination reveals he has tuberculosis, and he is committed to a frightful sanatorium. Amid his relapses and recoveries he meets a series of women who have a profound effect on his life: a mysterious French doctor, a captivating patient, and a sinister acquaintance from a Los Angeles barrio. Meanwhile, a hospital newsletter delivers articles describing the various ways in which tuberculosis patients have been treated throughout history—cared for humanely or ostracized, alienated, and administered shockingly barbaric medical treatments. The author equates these practices to heinous modern-day medical experimentation and the superstitious pagan practices of witchcraft and Satanism in California barrios.

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