The Wounded Storyteller: Body, Illness & Ethics

University of Chicago Press, 18. okt. 2013 - 282 sider
Updated second edition: “A bold and imaginative book which moves our thinking about narratives of illness in new directions.” —Sociology of Heath and Illness

Since it was first published in 1995, The Wounded Storyteller has occupied a unique place in the body of work on illness. A collective portrait of a so-called “remission society” of those who suffer from illness or disability, as well as a cogent analysis of their stories within a larger framework of narrative theory, Arthur W. Frank’s book has reached a large and diverse readership including the ill, medical professionals, and scholars of literary theory.

Drawing on the work of such authors as Oliver Sacks, Anatole Broyard, Norman Cousins, and Audre Lorde, as well as from people he met during the years he spent among different illness groups, Frank recounts a stirring collection of illness stories, ranging from the well-known—Gilda Radner’s battle with ovarian cancer—to the private testimonials of people with cancer, chronic fatigue syndrome, and disabilities. Their stories are more than accounts of personal suffering: They abound with moral choices and point to a social ethic.

In this new edition Frank adds a preface describing the personal and cultural times when the first edition was written. His new afterword extends the book’s argument significantly, discussing storytelling and experience, other modes of illness narration, and a version of hope that is both realistic and aspirational. Reflecting on his own life during the creation of the first edition and the conclusions of the book itself, he reminds us of the power of storytelling as way to understand our own suffering.

“Arthur W. Frank’s second edition of The Wounded Storyteller provides instructions for use of this now-classic text in the study of illness narratives.” —Rita Charon, author of Narrative Medicine

“Frank sees the value of illness narratives not so much in solving clinical conundrums as in addressing the question of how to live a good life.” —Christianity Today


One When Bodies Need Voices
Two The Bodys Problem with Illness
Three Illness as a Call for Stories
Four The Restitution Narrative
Five The Chaos Narrative
Six The Quest Narrative
Seven Testimony
Eight The Wound as Half Opening
Afterword Endangered Storytelling

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Om forfatteren (2013)

Arthur W. Frank is professor of sociology at the University of Calgary and the author of At the Will of the Body: Reflections on Illness; Letting Stories Breathe: A Socio-Narratology; and The Renewal of Generosity: Illness, Medicine, and How to Live, the latter two also published by the University of Chicago Press.

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