Your book or your wife

May 2, 2003

Peter Atkins made an unusually heartfelt appeal for universities to recognise the stresses and strains of authorship at a City University conference on the management of intellectual property this week. The Oxford University chemistry professor confided in his audience that the three editions of his classic textbook on physical chemistry had cost him one wife each. Who's Who lists only two, including the present Mrs Atkins, aka Baroness Greenfield. Is this the case of unrequited love, or a hole in the official biography? Perhaps the next book will be a romantic novel.

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