A Few Pages for a Life: Self-Portrait Through A Health Record Booklet

“It overflows with loose pages: medical prescriptions all mixed up, from my teenage to my adult years, from benign afflictions to serious troubles. All of those scattered fragments compose an anxious being. Rashes, panic attacks, chronic diarrhea. Nothing really changes, nothing really ever gets better. With slight variations, the same medication names come up again and again. 2005, 2013, 2021.”

Ethnographically Capturing the Autoimmune: Textures and Surplus

 Ethnographically Capturing the Autoimmune: Textures and Surplus   My New Year resolves to avoid fitting in within academic circles that reductively evaluate and lazily quantify my professional and personal contributions. I am tired of defending: my dissertation, my philosophies, and, ultimately, myself. Mentors and elders have confessed that the purpose of academic hazing is to…

On therapeutic nihilism

What we do is less about being right — though surely, that matters — and more about doing right by others, accompanying them in their journeys, marshaling the resources (cognitive, emotional, material) we have available to us to do so.

on justice & care

Michelle Munyikwa // Several months ago, I spent some clinical time working on a service with patients being evaluated for organ transplantation. Between the complex medical decision-making and challenging social negotiations that entail transplant evaluation, the social issues are infinitely more subjective and fraught. Everything from the substance use histories to the employment history to…

Embodying public health: Dressing the part

Madeleine Mant // The Canadian Public Health Association has identified 12 “great achievements” in public health since the early 1900s: Control of infectious disease Decline in deaths from coronary heart disease and stroke Family planning Healthier environments Healthier mothers and babies Motor-vehicle safety Recognition of tobacco use as a health hazard Safer and healthier foods…

What does it mean to be a triplet anyway?

  Steven Rhue // What is a triplet anyway?  Well . . . me.  I am one of three. A sibling to a brother and a sister. We were born in the same year, on the same day, at approximately the same time, and as it would imply, we are the same age.  A more…

a mature defense

Michelle Munyikwa // “The secret source of Humor is not joy but sorrow.” — Mark Twain, as quoted in Laughter Out of Place “You know, Michelle,” my senior resident said, in that didactic tone of voice that educators often use when they are about to drop some wisdom, “humor is a mature defense.“ We had…