Writers and Editors (Pat McNees's blog)
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Narrative Medicine

August 18, 2009

A colleague who read The Beneficial Effects of Life Story and Legacy Activities told me about a Narrative Medicine workshop being held in Venice, Italy (Sept. 20-22, 2009). The idea: narrative training with stories of illness "enables practitioners to comprehend patientsí experiences and to understand what they themselves undergo as clinicians." If you're curious and can't make Venice, here is a pageful of links to audiofiles you can listen to online of Narrative Medicine Rounds, lectures or readings presented by scholars, clinicians, or writers engaged in work at the interface between narrative and health care. Rounds are held on the first Wednesday of each month from 5 to 6:30 pm in the Columbia University Medical Center Faculty Club, followed by a reception. Rounds are free and open to the public.

Thanks to Elisabeth Pozzi-Thanner of Oral History Productions for making me aware of this emerging field. Elisabeth attended an excellent intensive four-day workshop on Narrative Medicine at Columbia University.

Here are some books on the subject:
Narrative Medicine: Honoring the Stories of Illness by Rita Charon; Narrative Medicine: The Use of History and Story in the Healing Process by Lewis Mehl-Medrona author of
Coyote Wisdom: Healing Power in Native American Stories
; Psychoanalysis and Narrative Medicine, ed. Peter L. Rudnytsky and Rita Charon.
There are MANY more titles on the subject. As I learn more about them, I'll add more titles.