The C2S blog draws on the arts, the social and biological sciences to explore the many meanings of health and "dis-ease." Designed to be a locus where patients, their families and professionals can meet on a level playing field, it is the natural off-shoot of the Cell 2 Soul Online Journal. We encourage the submission of ideas, essays, poems, stories, humor, and timely reviews relating to the humanities and health care.
Gavin Francis is a Scottish physician and writer. He was raised in Fife, Scotland, and now lives in Edinburgh where he works as a GP. His new book, Adventures in Human Being is a real keeper.
From the Guardian review: "It is grand, eloquent stuff, occasionally humorous, frequently moving, and invariably informative. In other hands, Adventures in Human Being might well have become cluttered with cliche, detail or sentimentality but Francis has a lightness of touch that helps him avoid these pitfalls. His use of quotes is sparing but erudite and his lack of self-importance – not a characteristic in his profession – is welcome. The end result is a thoroughly entertaining, provocative work."
Caitlin Stiglmeier is a pediatrician who spent the month of March 2015 working in rural India. Her occasional FaceBook pieces are captivating. Here is a recent one, dated May 11.
"It’s difficult to comprehend, still, the full scope and magnitude of my time in India. I felt I was merely being led to communities, families, individuals for a reason, through no control of my own. I lived much 'freer' in India, relinquishing all control over a situation yet still attempting to intervene medically when I was able.
photo by Caitlin, March 2015
This family was the first of many I saw in a migrant community in Segwa, and their expressions say it all. Mom was very skeptical, wary of the white person who appeared out of nowhere and asked so many questions. Dad was elated, stating I was a 'god in the flesh', physically here to help rather than an inanimate object in a temple. The children either greeted me with smiles and laughter or tears and tentative glances.
The nineteen eighties was a decade with nascent promise. India had a young Prime Minister in Mr. Rajiv Gandhi, the forthcoming telecommunication revolution was being widely discussed and a bright new future was being promised to the teeming millions. Thrissur or ‘Thirushivaperur’ (the town named after Lord Shiva) was a small town in central Kerala with a rich and vibrant culture. Thrissur was widely known as the cultural capital of God’s own country, Kerala. In the eighties, the government medical college was a new institution having been established in the early nineteen eighties.
Dr P Ravi Shankar spent over twelve years in the Himalayan country of Nepal and enjoyed trekking in the wonderful hills. He is at present a faculty at the Xavier University School of Medicine, Aruba, Kingdom of the Netherlands. He has a keen interest in the medical humanities. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
What Musicians Can Teach Doctors by Ann Drinan September 2012
I attended a meeting of the Hartford Medical Society last
week to hear a presentation by Dr. Lisa Wong, a pediatrician who plays violin
with the Longwood Symphony in Boston – the doctor’s orchestra. She’s written a
book, Scales to Scalpels, about the orchestra and the role of music in
As I was chatting with the Society’s librarian, I was
introduced to her father, Dr. Frank Davidoff, an internist and former editor of
“The Annals of Internal Medicine.” Last year he published an article titled,
“Music Lessons: What Musicians Can Teach Doctors and Other Health Care
Professionals.” Dr. Davidoff is well-suited to write such an article; he is a
serious piano student, and takes lessons from Anne Kan, who frequently subs
with the Hartford Symphony.