Questioning Medicine’s Discipline


A new publication that explores the potential of creative arts and expressions in expanding the relevance of emotion in medical education and practice.


This paper engages our struggles with the discipline of medicine. Specifically, and sometimes from very personal perspectives, we question if the geographies in which undergraduate medical education unfolds are healthy. As three women broadly trained as geographers who are emotionally, politically, personally, and professionally tied to the discipline of medicine, we wonder if undergraduate medical curriculum is meeting the competencies to which is aspires. Anchored in broader literatures about medical education and the potential of medical humanities, and in our own and others’ observations and experiences about medicine being – at least to some degree – a discipline in crisis and in some state of ruin and disrepair, we reflect in this paper on two things. First, we consider how undergraduate medical education disciplines its students and scholars in specific ways that often sublimates emotional knowledge. Second, we reflect on how the discipline’s undergraduate curricular structures might improve through creative interventions that encourage non-linear, creative, possibly emotive, ways of knowing and understanding.

Key Words:           

Undergraduate Medical Education, Medical Curriculum, Emotion, Medical Humanities, Creative Arts

Questioning Medicine’s Discipline – The arts of emotions in medical education – FINAL Published Version