Tag Archives: illness narrative

Seeking medicalization: chronic illness without diagnosed disease

Camille Kroll Chicago, Illinois, United States   Surgical scars and the expansion of narrative possibilities. By Camille Kroll. I was wheeled into the bright lights of the operating room with the symptom-based diagnoses of chronic pelvic pain and irritable bowel syndrome. When I groggily emerged several hours later, I had a new label: someone with […]

The use of language in health and illness narratives

Mariella Scerri Victor Grech  Malta   Portrait of Virginia Woolf in 1902. By George Charles Beresford. Public Domain. Via Wikimedia. “While I was as busy as anyone on the sunny plain of life, I heard of you laid aside in the shadowy recess where our sunshine of hope and joy could never penetrate to you.” […]

The sight of blood

Joanne Jacobson New York, New York, United States   Human plasma protein solution in bottle, Hertfordshire, Engl. Credit: Science Museum, London. CC BY None of us live to adulthood without seeing our own blood—growing up, I witnessed my blood flow free of my body too many times to count. The bleeding knee picked clean of leaves and […]

“Moonlight” and silence

Anne Jacobson Oak Park, Illinois, United States   Woman at the Piano. 1875/76. Pierre-Auguste Renoir. The Art Institute of Chicago. At seventeen, I knew little about the limitations or losses that might cause a person to second-guess a vocation, deeply held belief, or identity. Perhaps those questions about the unknowable future inhabit the soul of […]

The healing art of listening

Charles Paccione Oslo, Norway   Goldsworthy, Andy. Born 1956. Watercolour. Great Britain in 1991-1992. In storage, museum no.: E. 705-1993 Throughout my years of working with patients, both as a therapist and as a clinical researcher, I have been consistently reminded of the important role storytelling plays in fortifying a healing bond between patient and caregiver. Listening […]