Tag Archives: Fiction

The anatomy of bibliotherapy: how fiction heals, part III

Dustin Grinnell  Boston, Massachusetts, United States   Portrait of Friedrich Nietzsche. Photo by Gustav Schultze. 1882. Taken from Nietzsche by Walter Kaufmann, Fourth Edition. Public Domain. A cure for loneliness In the video “What is Literature For?” produced by The School of Life, author Alain de Botton claims that books are a cure for loneliness. […]

The anatomy of bibliotherapy: how fiction heals, part II

Dustin Grinnell  Boston, Massachusetts, United States   Frontispiece to the 6th edition of Anatomy of Melancholy by Robert Burton (published under the pseudonym Democritus Junior). 1868. From the Internet Archive and the Public Domain Review. The placebo effect When first exploring literature’s psychological effects on the reader, it is important to consider whether a book […]

The anatomy of bibliotherapy: how fiction heals, part I

Dustin Grinnell  Boston, Massachusetts, United States   Man Reading Book showing cityscape, suggesting an Open Doorway. From iStock. Words are, of course, the most powerful drug used by mankind. —Rudyard Kipling Literature is medicine for the soul In the 1980s, the mother of Northrop Frye, a Canadian literary scholar, was in the hospital, ill and […]

How to save a life

Sam Campbell Moh’D Ibrahim Johnson City, Tennessee, United States   “We had been happy together, though it took years to convince her family to allow us to marry.” My wife is in Texas, threatening to file divorce papers. I am here, 996 miles away, trying to find Mrs. Smith who has wandered out of her […]

A form of pain

Ifediba Nzube Port Harcourt, Nigeria   Èsù the trickster by Onyeji Prince. For Yewande, pain is Èsù slapping her head like a bata drum. But no one sees that; they see only a tumor pushing out her left eye, up her palate, and through her nostrils. Most days she smells like meat gone green. The […]

Tuesday: social admit

Rebecca Slotkin New Haven, Connecticut, United States   “Unraveling” by Ron Slotkin. Used with permission. We have a routine, Dad and I. I wake up first, turn on NPR and brew our coffee. My clamor tells Dad it is morning. This used to be my pre-work ritual before Dad started to get lost — first […]

Three doctor’s visits

Zara Aziz Bristol, England   The Cathedral by Auguste Rodin. 1908. Musée Rodin. Photograph by Daniel Stockman. 2010. CC BY-SA 2.0. Only one week ago Yasmin had been at the same flats to see her patient, Jenny Johnson. Jenny was a lovely lady of around fifty-two, with a lilting Irish accent and a penchant for saving […]

Chemo Room

Sarah Smith Pike Road, Alabama, United States   Chemotherapy iv. National Cancer Institute. Photo Credit: Linda Bartlett Cancer makes me glad I am fat. Mr. Weiss, two chairs down from Jack and me today, does not agree. Two months ago, Mr. Weiss tried to convince me of the importance of keeping in shape and maintaining a healthy […]

Jacarandas- a dream

In the year when the Olympic Games were held in Australia, the Jacarandas were in full bloom and their blue blossoms wafted through the air. At the Olympic campus an English boy and an Australian girl fell in love. Every night they would be seen walking through the cool air holding hands. Sometimes they went […]

Butterfly day

Marsal Sanches Bismarck, North Dakota, United States   In some cultures, black butterflies are considered omens of death. He did not believe that a black butterfly was an omen of death. It was just some old superstition he remembered hearing from his Brazilian babysitter many years before, sort of a South American banshee. Someone would […]