Medical Humanities 37 (2):79-84 (2011)

Authors
Emma Noonan
St. Francis Xavier University
Abstract
In this paper we articulate a growing awareness within the field of the ways in which medical humanities could be deemed expressive of Western cultural values. The authors suggest that medical humanities is culturally limited by a pedagogical and scholarly emphasis on Western cultural artefacts, as well as a tendency to enact an uncritical reliance upon foundational concepts (such as ‘patient’ and ‘experience’) within Western medicine. Both these tendencies within the field, we suggest, are underpinned by a humanistic emphasis on appreciative or receptive encounters with ‘difference’ among patients that may unwittingly contribute to the marginalisation of some patients and healthcare workers. While cultural difference should be acknowledged as a central preoccupation of medical humanities, we argue that the discipline must continue to expand its scholarly and critical engagements with processes of Othering in biomedicine. We suggest that such improvements are necessary in order to reflect the cultural diversification of medical humanities students, and the geographical expansion of the discipline within non-Western and/or non-Anglophone locations
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DOI 10.1136/medhum-2011-010120
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References found in this work BETA

The Evidence of Experience.Joan W. Scott - 1991 - Critical Inquiry 17 (4):773-797.
The Medical Humanities: Toward a Renewed Praxis. [REVIEW]Delese Wear - 2009 - Journal of Medical Humanities 30 (4):209-220.

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Citations of this work BETA

Reversing the Medical Humanities.Helene Scott-Fordsmand - forthcoming - Medical Humanities:medhum-2019-011745.
The Beauty in Perfect Imperfection.Stephen Buetow & Katharine Wallis - 2017 - Journal of Medical Humanities 40 (3):389-394.

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