Graphic Medicine

Medical Student, Peter Polewski asked Ebling’s Director, Julie Schneider if Ebling could obtain some graphic medicine novels for our collection. She obliged (their titles are below). Here’s some background from Peter.

Ever wonder how the culture of graphic novels could ever be intertwined with medicine? What are graphic novels to begin with? Graphic stories are predominantly found in bookstores, movies, and television. This medium has evolved over the past 100 years during which their audience has expanded from young people to serious minded adults keen on learning about topics ranging from philosophy to political revolutions. Similarly, graphic novels have been used to teach topics as diverse as professional ethics, creative writing and composition, literature and physics. However within medicine graphic novels have yet to become integrated into the curriculum along the likes of film, poetry, fiction, and visual art.

During preclinical years, graphic novels hold the potential to remind students about the vast body of scientific knowledge they are trying to master will one day help their patients. During clinical and residency years, graphic novels can reinforce that healing a patient involves more than treating a body. Observational skills can be enhanced. Effectively reading a comic requires an understanding of not only what is overtly seen and said, but what is implied. Outside of medical education, graphic novels also have the potential to aid patients understanding of disease as well as promote public health awareness.

We have chosen over a dozen select titles ranging from Mom’s Cancer by Brian Fies to Stitches by David Small to begin to familiarize the student body about highly regarded stories within this emerging area. It is our hope that you will be able to take a creative break from studying that enhances your learning about illness and medicine.

Peter Polewski
MD Candidate 2014
Ethics Committee

These titles can be found in MadCat, and you can borrow them or reserve them. If you’d like to comment on this subject you can comment on Ebling’s Facebook page, or comment here. If you’d like to recommend a title, do that here. Thank you, Peter…

Graphic Novel Titles

Stitches – David Small
Epileptic – David B.
Maus I/II – Art Spiegelman
Mom’s Cancer – Brian Fies
Psychiatric Tales – Darryl Cunningham
The Spiral Cage – Al Davison
La Perdida – Jessica Abel
Cancer Vixen – Marissa Marchetto
Acme Novelty Library #18 – Chris Ware
Binky Brown Sampler – Justin Green
The Long Road Home: One Step at a Time – G. B. Trudeau
Blue Pills, a Positive Love Story – Frederick Peeters
Swallow Me Whole – Nate Powell