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We find ourselves in crisis.

In times of crisis, action is at once indispensable and impossible, demanding a whole focus of attention while being dependent on events resolving themselves, requiring front-line workers to intervene while knowing themselves to have severely limited influence and agency. The front line is essentially a conversation with often unknown and always unpredictable forces, whether in the context of a major health crisis such as the Covid-19 pandemic, crises of citizenship like #blacklivesmatter and #transrightsarehumanrights, or their related crisis of imagining new futures. As a transdisciplinary field built upon allegiances and collaborations across the humanities, social sciences and medicine, medical humanities offers a unique space for conversation, exploration and possible resolution in the face of the profound challenges we face.

AMH invites you to join and contribute to our free online colloquies, which place two prominent speakers in conversation about their thoughts and experiences of working with crisis at the various front lines of medicine, policy and critical thought. Each colloquy focuses on a particular theme, and is organised as a 30-minute conversation, followed by an hour of public Q & A:

On Community, 25th March 2021 (starts 7.30pm GMT)

On Community: What new forms of community have emerged during the Covid-19 pandemic, and how have ideas of ‘community’ been tested? What kinds of practice will help build stronger communities in the wake of crisis? How do we drive social change within communities and beyond them? Our speakers will consider these questions from clinical, public health, critical and creative perspectives.

Professor Ludmilla Jordanova, Emeritus Professor of History and Visual Culture, Durham University

in conversation with

Professor Trish Greenhalgh, OBE, Professor of Primary Care Health Sciences, Nuffield Dept of Primary Care Health Services, University of Oxford

Ludmilla Jordanova is Emeritus Professor of History and Visual Culture, Durham University and interim director of the Centre for Visual Arts and Culture there. She writes about cultural history, portraiture, e.g. in medical settings, the practice of history including its ethical dimensions, using visual, literary and aural sources when possible.

Professor Trish Greenhalgh OBE is a general practitioner who also trained in social sciences. At the University of Oxford, she leads a programme of research at the interface between the social sciences and medicine, working across primary and secondary care. Her work seeks to celebrate and retain the traditional and the humanistic aspects of medicine and healthcare while also embracing the unparalleled opportunities of contemporary science and technology to improve health outcomes and relieve suffering. She has brought this interdisciplinary perspective to bear on the research response to the Covid-19 pandemic, looking at diverse themes including clinical assessment of the deteriorating patient by phone and video, the science and cultural contexts of face coverings, and policy decision-making in conditions of uncertainty.

On Loss, 27th January 2021 (starts 7.30pm GMT)
Professor Zoë Playdon, Emeritus Professor of Medical Humanities, University of London in conversation with Dr Ajoy Thachil, Consultant Psychiatrist, South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust.
Now available to watch on our website On Loss

On Futures, 24th February 2021 (starts 7.30pm GMT)
Professor Jane Macnaughton , Director of Institute for Medical Humanities, University of Durham in conversation with Professor Aditi Lahiri, Vice President (Humanities), the British Academy.

Download the PDF flyer here seminars

The AMH is a registered charity. If you like what we are doing please donate. Money from donations will be used specifically to award student prizes, to fund conference places for students and to fund software costs for online conversations, seminars and workshops.

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