What are the meanings of and responses to human suffering in an increasingly globalized world? How are those meanings and responses inflected by race, class, gender, ethnicity, and national identity? How does Western biomedicine define disease and wellness (both now and historically) and how are those definitions imposed on and adapted within the Global South? How have new genetic and reproductive technologies affected medical ethics? What happens when different cultural understandings of disease conflict with one another? How can the arts (literature, visual art, film, music) and philosophy have an impact on medicine and vice versa? How do cultural narratives inform both popular and expert understandings of medicine? This class explores crucial questions about health, well-being, medicine, and social inequality in the twenty-first century, with a particular focus on how narrative works in medical contexts.
Lower-division Elective courses allow students to choose (or “elect”) courses or faculty specific to their own developing interests, enabling them thereby to shape their own educational experience.
English Minor courses offer students centuries of cultural experience and representation in poetry, prose, drama, film, TV, new media, and folk artifacts. The English minor can focus and extend the values of a liberal arts education, while also providing extensive training in writing, speaking, and critical thinking.