I had heard about this already but appreciate you sending me this link just the same. I had purposely avoided this episode in "Art and Life" because it tends to be the one thing people know all to well about Van Gogh already. I'm still not sure if I agree with this version of events either. However, from my own research I think that what gets overlooked is that Van Gogh gives his ear to a girl. I think that it is obvious that the fight with Gauguin and/or subsequent self mutilation was not about Gauguin leaving Arles in as much as it was over a romantic rivalry for the girl's affections .