"Ticketed spectators watched anatomists slice into the distended bellies of decomposing corpses, parts gushing forth not only human blood but also fetid pus. The lilting but incongruous notes of a flute sometimes accompanied the macabre demonstration. Public dissections were theatrical performances," writes Dr. Lindsey Fitzharris in her new book The Butchering Art, available October 17th. The science and medical historian chronicles the gruesome horrors of an era before antisepsis -- when speed was prized over precision -- and the pioneering discoveries of Joseph Lister, known as the "father of modern surgery." Lister's antiseptic methods meant that injuries like a compound fracture no longer called for amputation.