Category Archives: Literature

Shadows Bright as Glass

Once again this week we’re addressing the mind-body problem, this time through art. Writer Amy Nutt’s new book, Shadows Bright as Glass displays the artwork of Jon Sarkin, a chiropractor who suffered a severe stroke and found an new identity … Continue reading

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Filed under Literature, Neuroscience

Graceful surrender

The title of this article really says it best, “The Sad, Beautiful  Fact That We’re Going to Miss Almost Everything.” For humans, there is a near infinite amount of art and literature to be exposed to, spanning thousands of years … Continue reading

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Filed under Education, Literature

The Emperor of All Maladies

Siddhartha Mukherjee, oncologist and author of The Emperor of All Maladies, recently received the Pulitzer Prize for his biography of cancer. The book is both scientifically enlightening and humanistic in its approach to suffering patients, not to mention Mukherjee’s beautifully … Continue reading

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Filed under Cancer, Humanism, Literature, Physician authors

Cutting for Stone

NPR’s book club read Abraham Verghese’s Cutting for Stone this month and chatted with the author. On the choice between life and work: Medicine presents us with this false dichotomy, or rather this temptation, that you come to medicine incomplete, … Continue reading

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Filed under Literature, Physician authors

The terrible evil

Illness takes a deep physical and emotional toll not just on the patient, but on the family as well. In today’s Letter of Note, Edgar Allan Poe describes his wife’s physical suffering, and his subsequent psychological descent. You say —”Can … Continue reading

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Filed under Literature, Love, Suffering

Portrait of a bacterium as copyright infringement

Cried the estate of James Joyce to scientist J. Craig Venter. Back in May 2010, geneticist J. Craig Venter announced the creation of the first synthetic life form, having replaced the genetic code in a Mycoplasma capricolum bacterium with DNA he … Continue reading

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Filed under Genetics, Literature, Research

Alas, poor Yorick! I knew him, doc

One of the most humbling aspects of medical school is experiencing the trust and disclosure granted by patients, simply by wearing a white coat. This idea of doctor-as-witness is examined in a new BMJ article, using Horatio from Hamlet to explore … Continue reading

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Filed under Literature