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The Institute for Medicine and Public Health

Center for Biomedical Ethics and Society

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Literature, Arts, and Medicine

"Nurturing communities of conversation."


Medical Humanities provides a different understanding of health by investigating the profound effects of illness and disease on patients, their families, health professionals, and the environment by an intertisciplinary collabaoration of Social Science, Literature, History, Philosophy, and Visual Arts into Medical Education, scholarly endeavors, and clinical practice. 

The Literature, Arts, and Medicine program's goal is to publicize events and initiatives, cultivate a network of people and programs, and promote interdisciplinary communication and community awareness.

 "Wherever the art of Medicine is loved, there is also a love of Humanity"


View the Literature, Arts, & Medicine Student Group here.


Upcoming Events:

Literature, Arts, & Medicine Planning Group

November 9th                  3:00 pm – 4:00 pm

December 7th                   2:00 pm – 3:00 pm


Literature, Arts, & Medicine Cultural Series

Literature, Arts, & Medicine is pleased to host the Cultural Series, a monthly creative performance lunch hour, this Thursday, December 1, from 12-1pm in LH 208. Please come enjoy performances in music, dance, literary readings, art, and more by friends and colleagues. Sign up here if you would like to perform or showcase your art this month or any future month! Impromptu performances are always welcome, so feel free to perform something at the end even if you didn’t sign up ahead of time.   All are welcome, and food and beverage is provided.

December 1, 2016
12-1 LH208

January 5, 2017
12-1 LH208

February 2, 2017
12-1 LH208

March 2, 2017
12-1 LH208

March 30, 2017
12-1 LH208

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Center for Biomedical Ethics & Society

Literature, Arts, and Medicine Events

Submissions to The Intima: A Journal in Narrative Medicine are opening on Saturday, March 26 and will last about a month.  More information can be found: 

The next gathering for readings of and reviews by Tennessee Valley Agrarian Society of Poets, Prosewriters and Playwrights will be this Wednesday, March 30, from 5:30-6:30 PM in the John Newman Conference room, G205, Medical Service, VA Hospital. Please bring new or old poems, stories and other writings for reading and review. It is time, too, for this Society to begin to begin the selection process for the 2016 Taubenslag Prize for Best Unpublished Literary Work by a Vanderbilt student, house officer, faculty member or alumnus. Light refreshment will be served at the gathering.

April 6, 2016  2:00-3:00 Monthly Meeting in 2525 West End ste 400.

Poets from Vanderbilt Medical Center will be reading and commenting on their work at the Williamson County Public Library on April 19, 6pm.  Dr Brian Christman, Dr Doug Hester, Dr Brenda Butka, and Julie Summers are the featured writers.

Brenda Butka, M.D. will be speaking at a conference for the Gold Humanism Society members from seven Florida medical schools in Orlando on April 23. Her poem, "Do Not Resuscitate", inspired an ongoing project now in 85 medical schools across the country called "Tell Me More".

May 4, 2016 2:00-3:00 Monthly Meeting in 2525 West End ste 400.

June 1, 2016 2:00-3:00 Monthly Meeting in 2525 West End ste 400. 


"On Leaving the Body to Science" by Claudia Emerson

"The Rise of the Medical Humanities" by Times Higher Education January 2015

"The Humanities: What's the Big Idea?" by NPR October 2015

"Do Not Resuscitate" by Brenda Butka, MD in The Journal of the American Medical Association.

"'Ask what person the disease has': Mount Sianai students highlight patients' personal lives" - Arnold P Gold Foundation



US National Library of Medicine: Images from the History of Medicine (IHM)

Medical Heritage Library

Antiqua Medicina University of Virginia

NYU Literature Arts Medicine Database

The Hastings Center