My Graphic Medicine Journey (Part Two)

Referencing Joseph Campbell’s Hero’s Journey, the first part of this post discussed humanity’s predisposition towards metaphors of journey and quest, and the possible application (as well as troubling) of these metaphors, against my own experience of chronic illness, academia, and comics. The stage at which I left this post, The Supernatural Aid, is when a... Continue Reading →

The Anti-Disability of Anti-Vaccination

During my final year of undergraduate studies at the University of California, Los Angeles, I was studying at a café and had with me Seth Mnookin’s controversial new book, The Panic Virus.[1]  While I was reading, I was approached by a woman who happened to be waiting for her order by my table. Intrigued by... Continue Reading →

23andMe as Modern Day Wunderkammer

  Whether collected on journeys around the world, bartered for with tradesmen dealing in wonders, or obtained as a gift, the objects within Renaissance Wunderkammern spanned an extremely wide spectrum—from antique busts to horns that could cure any ailment. Paintings and illustrations of these rooms show off large spaces filled to crowdedness with a plethora... Continue Reading →

Indigenous Poetics and Narrative Medicine

What exactly is narrative medicine, and how is it different from the work of humanities scholars who investigate medical topics? With this problem in mind, I set out to explore the roots of narrative medicine--not in academic medical schools, but in North American indigenous practices of healing through ritual storytelling. In our moment, narrative medicine... Continue Reading →

Edward Said’s Migratory End-of-Life Aesthetics

Bassam Sidiki In his influential work The Wounded Storyteller (1995), sociologist Arthur W. Frank makes a move that has been largely undertheorized: the application of postcolonial theory to illness narratives. “Just as political and economic colonialism took over geographic areas,” he writes, “modernist medicine claimed the body of the patients as its territory, at least... Continue Reading →

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