Against narrative medicine

Perspect Biol Med. 2013 Autumn;56(4):611-9. doi: 10.1353/pbm.2013.0032.


This essay aims to provoke debate on how and what the medical humanities should teach. It argues that the field has been dominated (to its detriment) by two misguided movements, postmodernism and narrative medicine, and that it should be redirected from utilitarian aims towards the goal of exposing medical students to a climate of thought and reflection.

MeSH terms

  • Attitude of Health Personnel
  • Education, Medical
  • Emotions
  • Empathy
  • Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice
  • Humanities* / education
  • Humans
  • Narration*
  • Physician's Role
  • Physician-Patient Relations
  • Physicians* / psychology
  • Students, Medical* / psychology