CFP: [Film] Medicine Without Borders: Medical Discourse in the Global Media Age (11/1/08; ACLA 2009; 3/26-3/29)

full name / name of organization: 
Angela Laflen
contact email: 

ACLA (American Comparative Literature Association) Convention 2009:
"Global Languages, Local Cultures"
Hosted by Harvard University
March 26- 29, 2009
Cambridge, MA

Medicine without Borders: Medical Discourse in the Global Media Age
Seminar leaders: Angela Laflen, Marist College, Dept. of English;
Marcelline Block, Princeton University, Dept. of French and Italian

Medical discourse has considerable social power, distinguishing the
healthy from the sick, establishing protocols for eradicating disease
and infection, and directing scientific research. Yet medical discourse
remains esoteric, accessible to those who are specially trained,
rendering most others-- including patients-- relatively incapable of
understanding it. The popular media often translates between medical
communities and the public, helping organize medical information into
coherent narratives and boiling down medical research into proscriptions
the public can easily understand and follow. This panel explores the
relationship between media and medicine, focusing on how the media (film,
television shows/commercials, the Internet, magazines, newspapers,
popular literature, new media, the graphic novel, etc.) represents the
discourse of medicine. What is the relationship between media and
medicine? How does the media represent and/or misrepresent medical
discourse? What medical discourses are most common in the media?
What stories does medical discourse help the media tell? How is
medical discourse gendered or raced by the media? Where/when is the media
critical of medical discourse and how? In considering the relationship
between media and medicine within the context of globalization and the
era of "doctors without borders" this panel also explores the effects of
globalization, in particular, the influence of non-traditional and/or non-
 Western medical practitioners and healing methods upon Western medicine
(and vice versa). How are Western and non-Western medical discourses
represented by the media, and how are the boundaries between these
discourses blurred?

Deadline for 250- word submissions: November 1, 2008
submit at

Marcelline Block
Princeton University
Department of French and Italian
305 East Pyne Hall
Princeton, NJ 08540

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Received on Fri Oct 10 2008 - 08:47:14 EDT