Gaining Access to Experience through Film
“I can only answer the question ‘What am I to do?’ if I can answer the prior question ‘Of what story or stories do I find myself a part?’” Alisdair MacIntyre, from After Virtue, Notre Dame UP, 1981
People slip out of the story they’re living all the time; daily life is full of moments of rupture, distraction and disappearance. With a practical demonstration of working with film in a narrative medicine classroom, this seminar will work to show how close reading of film can be a method for locating oneself in one’s own story – a crucial element of ethical practice in health care.
Maura Spiegel, PhD teaches literature and film at Columbia University and Barnard College. She is co-director the Division of Narrative Medicine in the Department of Medical Humanities and Ethics, Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, where she also teaches a film course to first-year medical students. With Rita Charon, MD, PhD, she edited the journal Literature and Medicine (Johns Hopkins University Press) for seven years. She co-authored The Principles and Practice of Narrative Medicine (Oxford University Press), The Grim Reader: Writings on Death, Dying and Living On (Anchor/Doubleday), and has published articles on many subjects including the history of the emotions, Charles Dickens, Victorian fashion and film, and diamonds in the movies. She has lectured on Narrative Medicine in Venice, London, Dublin, Buenos Aires, Toronto, Baroda, India, and in cities around the U.S. Her book, Sidney Lumet: A Life (St. Martin’s Press) was published in 2019.