Narrative Medicine for Medical Learners

Offered: Spring

Course: INTERDIS 403C

This elective course is a fourth year clinical elective where students will discuss selected works of literature that address the human condition in a way that is meaningful to physicians-in-training. The course is open to third and fourth year medical students. The aim is to incorporate literature into the medical training experience, give students the opportunity to practice reflective writing, and the space to explore the humanistic roots of medicine. In this course we will examine the intersection between the domains of narrative and medicine through the study of diverse representations of medical issues. Among the questions we will ask are: how does narrative give us greater insight into illness, medical treatment, doctor-patient relationships, and other aspects of health and medicine? How do illness and other experiences within the realm of medicine influence ways of telling stories? How do doctors’ perspectives and patients’ perspectives differ, and what, if anything, should be done to close those differences? Attendance to all sessions is mandatory. However, a student may miss one session with advanced approval from the course director; the student must submit a written reflection of the readings for the missed session, as outlined by the course director, in order to receive credit for the course.


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