Blood on Silk: The Violence of Medicine: Part VI Going under the Knife

The World Health Organization[1] defines violence as ‘the intentional use of physical force or power, threatened or actual, against oneself, another person, or against a group or community, that either results in or has a high likelihood of resulting in injury, death, psychological harm, maldevelopment or deprivation. Choosing to go under the knife, a slang [...]

Blood on Silk: The Violence of Medicine, Part III Being Deprived of Sleep

Patients often report serious difficulties with sleeping while in hospital and this experience of deprivation is even more profound when the patient is in ICU. While there is evidence for the impact of sleep deprivation on cognitive functioning in ICU patients it is only ‘associated’ with the onset of ICU delirium or intrusive hallucinatory experiences. [...]

Violence in medicine Part II – Using the language of war

The American medical humanities scholar Kathleen Powers questions the notion that the violence within hospitals or within medicine is tempered by metaphor and discretion. Rather, she considers the metaphoric language used in hospitals to be a language of violence, or a language of war. In a 2017 paper she outlined the militaristic and violent frameworks [...]

Blood on Silk: the Violence of Medicine

Fiona Davies, Blood on Silk: The Violence of Medicine I (detail) 2020. Conceptual Background: The American academic Johanna Shapiro in a 2018 essay establishes a framework of types of violence in medicine that ranges from the systemic bureaucratic “organisational violence”, originating from the hospital’s architecture and design, noise levels, access to public transport, and the [...]

Non invasive testing of blood glucose levels.

Video Still, BloodonSilk: Blood Types O +, 2012, 2 mins Frédérique Sunstrum, was recently a gold award winner in the Next Gen category for the Good Design Australia Awards. Her design replaces the needs for Diabetes patients to remove a sample of blood from their body and test it externally for glucose levels with a [...]

The plague and its continuing presence.

From the Sunday Morning Medicine wordpress site roundup of that weeks interesting takes on medical history comes a fantastic article by the staff writer on the Atlantic, Sarah Zhang about the Soviet attempts to eradicate the plague in the twentieth century. https://www.theatlantic.com/science/archive/2019/05/when-soviets-tried-to-eradicate-the-plague/589570/ It made me think of the amazing work by Amy Chan and Natalie [...]