Hektoen International

A Journal of Medical Humanities

Literary Essays

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A – J

Sama Alreddawi and Barry Meisenberg
A poet for a patient: A tenth century poem by al Mutanabbi

Lena Arampatzidou
Synesthesia in medicine and the humanities

Kate Baggott
A difficult diagnosis: Humor—how we laugh at doctors

Sarah Bahr
“Love Tea” and The Antelope Wife
Madness and gender in Gregory Doran’s Hamlet

Katherina Baranova
The unsexed woman: depictions of women in 19th century fictional literature

Cal Bartley
Heroes and alcohol

Greg Beatty
Bones and Bots: what classic science fiction tells us about contemporary medicine

Angela Belli
Dr. Blockhead’s victory: up there, down here
Ending one’s life on the stage

Alan Bleakley
Under the lime tree: medicine, poetry, and the education of the senses

Victoria Bonebakker
Humanities at the heart of healthcare

Emily Boyle
“Get well soon”: Rapid recovery in two children’s novels WIN ’24

Rachel Bright, Kevin Qosja, and Liam Butchart
Dr. Peabody, the ideal medical practitioner

Basil Brooke
‘The lament of the Old Woman of Beare’—contrasting the passage of life

Liam Butchart
Camus, Meursault, and the Biopsychosocial Model

Liam Butchart and Olga Reykhart
Emily, Usher, and American Gothic perspectives on mortality

Vasudha Chandra
Remembering Charlotte Brontë

Xi Chen
Ahab’s gift: Herman Melville’s Moby Dick and the meaning of pain

Maria Chicco
Anatomical descriptions in the Iliad

Kathleen Coggshall
Sylvia Plath: the tortured artist?

Elizabeth Lovett Colledge
Elizabeth Barrett Browning—isolation and the artist
Wordsworth’s “The Idiot Boy”: Disability and maternal love new

Jack Coulehan
Walt Whitman: a difficult patient

Paul Dakin
Sir Roderick Glossop: Wodehouse’s “eminent loony doctor”
Professionalism in crisis: Dr. Winkel and The Third Man

Niamh Davies-Branch
The female body dissected: Anatomy and John Keats

Noah DeLone
Latin and medicine

Sabina Dosani
Madness, mind-doctors and Mrs. Dalloway

Martin Duke
Tobias Smollett, MD: his medical life and experiences

George Dunea
John Keats – one whose name was writ in water
Charlotte Perkins Gilman, apostle of women’s liberation
Doctor Johnson and his ailments
Friedrich Nietzsche—much afflicted philosopher
Indo-Europeans and medical terms
Samuel Pepys: Stones and groans

George Dunea and James L. Franklin
Rudyard Kipling and the medical profession

Kathryne Dycus
Reading the brain in John Keats’s “Ode to Psyche”
Children treating children: Anne Shirley as clinician

Eve Elliot
Catching Your Death: Infectious rain in the works of Jane Austen

Francesco Enia
An Eliotian journey through suffering

Carol-Ann Farkas
The literary breakdown in Donna Tartt’s The Goldfinch

Howard Fischer
Of Mice and Men: a differential diagnosis for Lennie Small 
Franz Kafka, A Country Doctor, (and Bob Dylan) 
Knock, or The Triumph of Medicine
Dr. AJ Cronin: Still persona non grata?
Dr. Heinrich Hoffmann and Der Struwwelpeter
Dr. Mikhail Bulgakov and morphine
Drs. Joseph Bell, Arthur Conan Doyle, William Osler, and the method of Zadig
Pippi Longstocking: Escapist fiction for children, a clinical case description, or a feminist icon? WIN ’24
George Orwell: An attempt at a diagnosis WIN ’24
Robert Klopstock: Kafka’s fellow patient, friend, and doctor new

Laura Fitzpatrick
Pushing back at perceptions of epilepsy: the interplay between medicine and literature in three 19th-century British novels

James L. Franklin
PDF Document Prescription for a Healthy Nation: A New Approach to Improving Our Lives by Fixing Our Everyday World
PDF Document To the Glory of God and the Service of Man: The Life of James A. Campbell, M.D.
PDF Document Charlatan: America’s Most Dangerous Huckster, the Man Who Pursued Him and the Age of Flimflam
A bit of irony: Sir William Wilde and Oscar Wilde
George Orwell and the Spanish Civil War: A brush with death
Rejuvenation: “The Adventure of the Creeping Man” from The Case-Book of Sherlock Holmes
Ben Hecht and the “Miracle of the Fifteen Murderers”

Ashleigh Frayne
Visualizing the paradise within

Dean Gianakos
Reading poems, saving lives
Wandering lonely as a cloud

Grant Gillett and Robin Hankey
Sophocles’ Antigone and the complexities of suicide

F. Gonzalez-Crussi
We are all hospitalized (metaphorically speaking)
Love as illness: symptomatology

John Graham-Pole
The truth of the imagination

Valerie Gribben
The Brothers Grimm under the knife

Anthony Gulotta
Holden Caulfield’s coughing conundrum: A medical perspective new

Janet Ming Guo
Schizophrenia in Nikolai Gogol’s Diary of a Madman and Lu Xun’s A Madman’s Diary

Zoya Gurm
Blake’s autonomous newborn: Neonatal mortality in “Infant Joy” and “Infant Sorrow”

Stanley Gutiontov
Chekhov: “Ward No. 6”

Oyenike Ilaka
The Joys of Motherhood: The classic Nigerian novel

Sarah Jane I. Irawa
Madame Defarge: the psychology of vengeance

Stewart Justman
Tales of the psychosomatic in the Lyrical Ballads


K – P

Leah Kaminsky
Fluorescence

Sylvia R. Karasu
Hawthorne’s The Birthmark: a failure to find a perfect future in an imperfect present
About face: from revulsion to compassion

Trisha Kesavan
Ondine’s curse: You sleep, you die

Anika Khan
Gilgamesh and medicine’s quest to conquer death

Mahek Khwaja
The Yellow Wallpaper: the flawed prescription

Anna Lantz
The Hagströmer Medico-Historical Library: a cultural treasure
Erik Waller the book collector

Anna Lantz and Einar Perman
The basilisk—a cause of sudden death

John Last
Medicine and literature: passion, compassion, confusion and other emotions in stories of sickness and healers

Carol Levine
New opioid epidemic: another long day’s journey

Marshall A. Lichtman
The most enduring fictional character in literature, Sherlock Holmes, created by a physician

Philip R. Liebson
Did Ernest Hemingway have the Celtic curse?

Kevin R. Loughlin
It’s elementary: the addictions of Sherlock Holmes

Pekka Louhiala and Raimo Puustinen
Placebo effect or care effect? Four examples from the literary world

Maite Losarcos
The new pandemic

Curtis E. Margo and Lynn E. Harman
Charles Dickens and the Victorian perception of blindness

William Marshall
Middle Ages, Middlemarch, and the mid-twentieth century: Idealism at risk

Jackson Martin
The ones who stay in Omelas new

Stephen Martin
Art, anhedonia, and family psychodynamics in the creativity of Nathaniel Hawthorne

James Mathew and Robert Pavlik
Of pine and man: Reflecting on Henry David Thoreau’s sentiment in “Chesuncook”

Giuseppe P. Mazzarello
PDF Document Goethe, his love rivals and evidence of a generalized anxiety disorder

Jamie McKinstry
Experiencing metaphor: a medieval headache

Stephen McWilliams
The ordeal of Evelyn Waugh

Lea Mendes
The medical journey of Charles Dickens

Atara Messinger
Margaret Edson’s W;t: lessons on person-centered care

Sally Metzler
Robert Louis Stevenson and hereditary hemorrhagic telangiectasia

Lucille Miao
Climate trauma in Monique Roffey’s Archipelago

Lisa Mulleneaux
Ella’s addiction: the story of a mother and morphine

Tony Miksanek
Grumpy doctors and the short story

Tamas F. Molnar and Katalin Aknai
Occupational lung malignancies: role of malachite

Joshua D. Niforatos
Love, cancer and the caregiver’s faith of C.S. Lewis

Raymond Noonan
Using Latin to settle medical pronunciation debates

Sarah O’Dell
The Medical Inkling: R.E. Havard, C.S. Lewis, and J.R.R. Tolkien

Serefnur Oztur
PDF Document My stroke of insight: a brain scientist’s personal journey

Japjee Parmar
Greater than the sum of her parts: The journey of a medical student

J.M.S. Pearce
Observations on acronyms
Patrick Branwell Brontë (1817–1848): A tale of aspiration and decline
George Gordon Lord Byron and his limp
The Gold-Headed Cane revisited
Joseph Bell and Conan Doyle
Plain Words, or pandemic medical gobbledygook
A note on medical metaphors
Gouty quotes
Somerset Maugham
Dr. William Minor and the Oxford English Dictionary
Samuel Johnson: “The great convulsionary”
William Wordsworth: “The blind poet”?
Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s bondage of opium
The Scriblerus and other clubs
William Blake
Some Dickensian diagnoses
Poets at the Craiglockhart War Hospital
The Lambs’ Tale
Dylan Thomas’s terminal illness
Noah Webster’s war on words
Spoonerisms WIN ’24
Tea with Walter de la Mare by Russell Brain WIN ’24

Giorgina Barbara Piccoli and Martina Ferraresi
Cosmas and Damian: a southern Italian story of tolerance, sex, war, religion, and medicine

Solomon Posen
The doctor in literature: the abortion and the abortionist


R – Z

Negin Rezaei
On suffering and its depiction in William Carlos Williams’s “The Yellow Flower”

Nicolas Roberto Robles
Rilke: A poet’s death
Heinrich Heine and the mattress tomb
Novalis: The white plague and the blue flower
Coleridge and the albatross syndrome
E.T.A. Hoffmann’s neurological disease
Jorge Luis Borges: Brilliant blindness
Baudelaire’s spleen
Miguel Hernández

Gregory W. Rutecki
Poe’s consumptive paradox

Gregory W. Rutecki and Milad Matta
Ladies in red: medical and metaphorical reflections on La Traviata

Bonnie Salomon
Emily Dickinson and medical ethics: the “Belle of Amherst” as ethicist

Jamie Samson
The other kingdom

Mariella Scerri and Victor Grech
The use of language in health and illness narratives

Robert Schell
“No one should approach the temple of science with the soul of a money-changer”: Who said it first?

Richard Selzer
Richard Selzer on writing

Fergus Shanahan
The unloved gut
The professor and the playwright on what it means to care

Fergus Shanahan and Eamonn Quigley
ReJoycing in words and medicine

Sualeha Siddiq Shekhani
Intersection of faith and science in Garcia-Marquez’s Of Love and Other Demons

Michael D. Shulman
Saints on trial

Anoushka Sinha
Manifestations of madness in King Lear

Mahala Yates Stripling
Richard Selzer: The birth of literature and medicine
The surgeon storyteller

Edward Tabor
The eight physicians of Shakespeare new

Mariel Tishma
More than “toil and trouble”: Macbeth and medicine

Angad Tiwari and Mallika Khurana
The use of force in medicine

Lazaros C. Triarhou
Two odes to Santiago Ramón y Cajal

Satyabha Tripathi
A “most perfect interchange”

Annette Tuffs
The morbid poet: Gottfried Benn, the morgue and the mysterious postcard

Mary Vallo
Resounding silence: the trouble with Hamlet’s body and soul
Narrative control and the monster within: empowering disability in Jane Eyre

Sean Varner
The iron crab

Christopher Walker
Two tales of talipes equinovarus

Roslyn Weaver
Medical mysteries and detective doctors: metaphors of medicine

Simon Wein
Melville’s Bartleby: An absurd casualty
Esperanto and the babble of dreamers

Winona Winkler Wendth
Shiloh

Maarten Wensink
Tolstoy: insights for doctors and other humans

Mila H. Whiteley
Reason vs. Emotion in Charlotte Brontë’s Shirley

Sarah Wise
Why ‘Nurse’ Grace Poole is the greatest puzzle in Jane Eyre

Andrew P. K. Wodrich
Essential tremor in a medieval scribe: extracting hidden historical knowledge from the work of the Tremulous Hand

Frank Wollheim
Joseph Roth, a visionary poet and victim of European history

Afsheen Zafar
Jane Eyre and tuberculosis

Larry Zaroff and Tony Chan
Emily Dickinson’s mystifying in-sight