Health & Illness Through the Lens of Literature/Media... Ideas?

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    I am working on developing a 3 credit (40 hour) course dealing with literature/media and health care. As a seminar/general studies-type course, students would primarily include nursing students but might also include other students, such as human services majors who may go on to become social workers and some pre-med students.

    I've read many books, articles, poems and short stories and have also seen several documentaries, television series, and pieces of artwork all reflecting various aspects of health care. For this course, my goal is to include a combination of material that will not be overwhelming but yet will provide a nice sampling of what is out there and be meaningful and useful.

    I'm interested in hearing what specific material (books, articles, short stories, television series episodes, etc.) all of you think would be perfect for this type of course (and why, if you are feeling particularly ambitious ). The material can be from the patient's perspective, family perspective, nurse's perspective, a third-party perspective, or any combination thereof. (I have some in mind, but I want to see if I'm thinking along the same lines as others, too.)

    I appreciate the input!
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    This is a favorite subject of mine and I use literature extensively everyday in class. Would be happy to talk on the phone too. You can find lists of all kinds of literature, songs, etc related to aging and end of life care on my website silver hour.info. Feel free to email. Would love to help you. Marilyn
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    I'm a bit confused about your focus. Very little media portrays reality. Whether the news or entertainment, it is rarely realistic. Even reality TV is highly edited and staged. Perhaps I'm missing your point. If your are looking at interpretations of health care that's something that might work. Thin is a very good documentary about being too thing. I would also mine YouTube. There's a billion stories on there, not all of them well produced, but from the heart. Good luck.
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    There's a famous poem written from the viewpoint of an old lady in ltc. Gives students something to think about.

    Another one that I read in hs lit class is a short story about boy with low grade fever who thinks he's dying because of a confusion of metric vs standard temp reading
  8. 0
    Not sure if this is what you're looking for, but here is a reference to an article about the film's portrayal of nurses:

    Stanley, D.J. (2008). Celluloid angels: A research study of nurses in feature films 1900-2007. Journal of Advanced Nursing, 64(1), 84-95.
    Last edit by lub dub on Jul 19, '13 : Reason: formatting
  9. 0
    I will be taking a class called Literature of health and healing. It is part of the English department's offerings. Not sure what we'll cover, but it sounds like a similar concept.


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