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Jan Nawrocki (Medical Humanities)

Pride and vanity in medicine and surgery.

The practices of medicine and surgery require the exercise of judgement. Specialist knowledge and skills are commonly seen as the primary focus in the positivist scientific paradigm of modern medicine and surgery. Yet, physician and surgeon practice their disciplines in order to benefit an individual. The decisions and judgements to be made concern a particular individual not an abstract collection of people. Abstract or theoretical specialist knowledge and skills assist the decision making and judgement required but the practices of medicine and surgery are conducted in the context of an individual narrative relating to an individual person and their body. In the narratives that make up practice, physician or surgeon make decisions under the influence of many external and internal determinants. This research concerns a missing language and narrative relating to some of the internal determinants. Narratives of medicine, surgery and medical education are interwoven with pride and vanity that are explored in relationship to other professions.

Supervisors: Dr Jo Winning and Dr Clare Penlington.