Interdisciplinary Minor in Medicine, Literature, and Culture

Honors Carolina interdisciplinary minor in Medicine, Literature, and Culture encourages students to examine medicine not only as a scientific enterprise, but also as a cultural practice embedded in changing ideas about disease, the doctor-patient relationship, medical institutions, and medical ethics. The program was developed in collaboration with the Department of English and Comparative Literature and the Department of Anthropology in the College of Arts and Sciences, the Department of Social Medicine in the UNC School of Medicine, and the School of Journalism and Mass Communications.

The Honors interdisciplinary minor is designed for students majoring in disciplines as varied as the physical and life sciences, the humanities and fine arts, and the social and behavioral sciences. In the near future, Honors Carolina and its campus partners will launch a B.S.-M.A. program that allows students to complete a Bachelor of Science degree in three years, followed by a one-year Master’s degree in Medicine, Literature, and Culture.

Courses and Requirements

The Honors interdisciplinary minor is available to Honors Carolina students (as well as undergraduates with a 3.0 GPA). Requirements for the minor include the successful completion of five courses in three different disciplines. English 268H: Medicine, Literature, and Culture is required as a gateway course for all students.

Options for additional courses include:

  • AAAD 300, Cultures of Health and Healing in Africa
  • ANTH 147, Comparative Healing Systems
  • ANTH 270, Living Medicine
  • ANTH 319, Global Health
  • ANTH 442, Health and Gender after Socialism
  • ANTH 443, Cultures and Politics of Reproduction
  • ANTH 444: Medicine, Politics, and Justice
  • ANTH 470: Medicine and Anthropology
  • ANTH 473: Anthropology of the Body and the Subject
  • ANTH 474, The Anthropology of Disability
  • CMPL 383: Literature and Medicine
  • ENGL 266: Science and Literature
  • ENGL 269, Introduction to Disability Studies
  • ENGL 370, Race, Health, and Narrative
  • ENGL 610, Science as Literature: Rhetorics of Science & Medicine
  • ENGL 611, Narrative, Literature, and Medicine: Advanced Interdisciplinary Seminar
  • GEOG 445, Medical Geography
  • HIST 329, An Introduction to the History of Medicine
  • HIST 472, Medicine and Health in Early Modern Europe
  • HIST 622, Medicine and Society in America
  • HNRS 650 Topics in Medicine and the Humanities
  • MEJO 560: Medical and Science Journalism
  • PLCY 361, Health Policy and Politics
  • PLCY 565, Global Health Policy
  • PLCY 570, Health and Human Rights
  • RELI 665, Body and Suffering in Christian Mysticism
  • SOCI 422, Sociology of Health and Mental Illness
  • SOCI 431, Aging

Honors Carolina is actively investing in the development of additional courses from departments in the College of Arts and Sciences and the School of Public Health.

Fall 2016 Course Offerings

The following courses in the minor are being offered in Fall 2016:

  • ENGL 268/268H, Medicine, Literature, and Culture
    Dr. Jane Thrailkill
    MWF, 2-2:50 (lecture) + required recitation
  • AAAD 300, Cultures of Health and Healing in Africa
    Dr. Lydia Boyd
    TR, 3:30-4:45
  • ANTH 147, Comparative Healing Systems
    Dr. Jocelyn Chua
    TR, 3:30-4:45 (lecture) + required recitation
  • ANTH 270, Living Medicine
    Dr. Martha King
    MW, 1:25-2:15
  • ANTH 443, Cultures and Politics of Reproduction
    Dr. Michele Rivkin-Fish
    MWF, 1:25-2:15
  • ENGL 266: Science and Literature
    Dr. Margaret O’Shaughnessey
    MWF, 1:25-2:15
  • ENGL 370, Race, Health, and Narrative
    Dr. Gershun Avilez
    TR, 2:00-3:15
  • GEOG 445, Medical Geography
    Dr. Ashley Ward
    MWF, 12:20-1:10
  • MEJO 560: Medical and Science Journalism
    Dr. Thomas Linden
    MW, 2:30-3:45
  • SOCI 422, Sociology of Health and Mental Illness
    Dr. Hexuan Liu
    MWF, 2:30-3:20

Professional School and Career Opportunities

The Honors Carolina interdisciplinary minor prepares students for a variety of careers in medicine and health care, health policy, and social services. The minor is also valuable for students planning postgraduate studies in traditional humanities fields, such as literature and history.

Health care professionals and educators have demonstrated growing interest in the cultural and social dimensions of medical practices. Indeed, the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT) is currently being revised to include new sections on the humanities and social sciences. The Honors Carolina interdisciplinary minor in medicine, literature, and culture puts Carolina a step ahead in preparing students for this important change, and for successful careers as practitioners, policy makers, and researchers.