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Day 1:  Medical Humanities & Global Health

Cropped Photo of Dean Leonidas Bachas for Medical Humanities Institute Bio page

Leonidas G. Bachas

Leonidas G. Bachas joined the University of Miami as Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences in July 2010. Dean Bachas is a distinguished analytical and biological chemist who was the Frank J. Derbyshire Professor of Chemistry at the University of Kentucky and chair of its Department of Chemistry. He has been a prolific researcher in the fields of nanoscience, biofuel cells, microfabricated analytical systems, and tissue regeneration, serving as principal or co-principal investigator on more than 70 grants totaling $40 million in external funding. Dean Bachas is a passionate believer in the power of the liberal arts and sciences: only a broad liberal arts education, he says, can produce the kind of creative and critical thinkers who can help solve the world’s most challenging problems.

Joao Biehl, MD, PhD, Susan Dod Brown Professor of Anthropology; Co-Director, Program of Global Health Policy, Princeton University

João Biehl
João Biehl is Susan Dod Brown Professor of Anthropology and the Co-Director of Princeton’s Program in Global Health and Health Policy. He is the author of Vita: Life in a Zone of Social Abandonment (California, 2005) and Will to Live: AIDS Therapies and the Politics of Survival (Princeton, 2009). Vita garnered seven major book awards, including the J. I. Staley Award of the School for Advanced Research and the Margaret Mead Award of the American Anthropological Association. Will to Live was awarded the Wellcome Medal of Britain’s Royal Anthropological Society and the Diana Forsythe Prize of the American Anthropological Association. Biehl is the coeditor of When People Come First: Critical Studies in Global Health (Princeton, 2013), Subjectivity: Ethnographic Investigations (California, 2007), and the book series Critical Global Health (Duke). His current ethnographic research explores the social impact of large-scale treatment programs in resource-poor settings, the role of the judiciary in administering public health, and the emergence of the category of patient-citizen-consumers in Brazil.

Merike Blofield - Medical Humanities Institute Bio Photo

Merike Blofield
Merike Blofield is Associate Professor of Political Science and the Director of the Program in Women's Studies. She is the author of Care Work and Class: Domestic Workers’ Struggle for Equal Rights in Latin America (Penn State, 2012); The Politics of Moral Sin: Abortion and Divorce in Spain, Chile and Argentina, (Routledge, 2006); and the editor of The Great Gap: Inequality and the Politics of Redistribution in Latin America (Penn State, 2011). Care Work and Class won the National Women’s Studies Association Sara A. Whaley Book Award for 2013. She has directed projects funded by the Ford Foundation (2007-9) and Fundação de Amparo à Pesquisa do São Paulo (2012). 

Edouard Duval-Carrié, Artist (Medical Humanities Institute Bio Photo)

Edouard Duval-Carrié
Edouard Duval-Carrié is a Haitian sculptor and painter, who was educated at McGill University and at the École nationale supérieure des beaux-arts in Paris. Inspired by Haitian traditions, Duval-Carrié creates works that speak to the complexities of the Caribbean and its diaspora. Recent solo exhibitions include Imagined Landscapes, Pérez Art Museum Miami (2014); Arts in the Garden, Miami Beach Botanical Gardens (2010); Roots & More, Afrika Museum, Berg en Dal, Holland (2009); Edouard Duval-Carrié, The Glass Curtain Gallery, Columbia College, Chicago (2007). Recent group exhibitions include: in Extermis, Museé de la civilization, Québec City, Québec (2013); Who More Sci Fi Than Us? Contemporary Art from the Caribbean, Kunsthall KAdE, Amersfoot, Netherlands (2012); Caribbean: Crossroads of the World, The Studio Museum of Harlem, New York (2012); and First Haitian Pavilion, 54th Venice Biennale, Palazzo Stamplia Querini, Venice (2011).

Reginald Fils-Aimé

Reginald Fils-Aimé
Reginald Fils-Aimé is a Haitian generalist physician with a Master of Medical Sciences in global health delivery. He directed the Zanmi Lasante/ Partners In Health’s multi-drug resistant tuberculosis program; and since 2012, he has been contributing to the implementation and improvement of its mental health program. His master’s thesis presented an analysis of the lived experience of those suffering from severe mental illness in rural Haiti, drawing on the disciplines of history, anthropology, sociology, political economy and medical sciences. His management work is also informed by these different disciplines.

Donette Francis, Medical Humanities Institute Panelist (pink)

Donette Francis
Donette Francis is Associate Professor of English and Director of the American Studies Program at the University of Miami. She specializes in Caribbean literary and intellectual histories, American immigrant literatures, African diaspora literary studies, globalization and transnational feminist studies, and theories of sexuality and citizenship. Her book, Fictions of Feminine Citizenship: Sexuality and the Nation in Contemporary Caribbean Literature (Palgrave, 2010), charts an alternative history of racial and sexual formation in the Caribbean— moving across historical periods and national contexts. She is currently working on two book projects: The Novel 1960s: Form and Sensibilities in Caribbean Literary Culture, an intellectual history of the Anglophone Caribbean’s transnational literary culture; and Creole Miami: Black Arts in the Magic City, a sociocultural history of black arts practice in Miami from the 1980s to present. 

Julio Frenk thumbnail

Julio Frenk
Julio Frenk, President of the University of Miami, also holds academic appointments as Professor of Public Health Sciences at the Leonard M. Miller School of Medicine and as Professor of Health Sector Management and Policy at the School of Business Administration. He was the dean of the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health and the T & G Angelopoulos Professor of Public Health and International Development, a joint appointment with the Kennedy School of Government. As Minister of Health of Mexico from 2000 to 2006, he introduced a program of comprehensive universal coverage. He is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the U.S. National Academy of Medicine, and the National Academy of Medicine of Mexico; a senior fellow in the global health program of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation; as well as the recipient of the Clinton Global Citizen Award and the Association of Schools and Programs of Public Health Welch-Rose Award for Distinguished Service.

 Deborah Jenson (Medical Humanities Institute)‌‌‌

Deborah Jenson
Deborah Jenson is Professor of French, Romance Studies, and Global Health, and Director of the Franklin Humanities Institute at Duke University. She co-directs the Duke Haiti Humanities Lab (with Laurent Dubois), focusing her work on the history of cholera in Haiti and the Caribbean, and mental health issues among survivors of the Haiti earthquake. Her other research areas focus on traumatic stress, cognition and culture, and the ethnic identities of African slaves in 18th-century Saint-Dominique. She also serves as a Co-Convener of the DIBS/FHI Neurohumanities Research Group. Her most recent books are a literary history of the Haitian Revolution, Beyond the Slave Narrative (Liverpool, 2011) and a volume on the global legacies of psychoanalysis, Unconscious Dominions (with Anderson and Keller; Duke, 2011).

David Jones (Medical Humanities Institute)‌‌‌

David S. Jones
David S. Jones is the inaugural A. Bernard Ackerman Professor of the Culture of Medicine at Harvard University, a joint position between the Faculty of Arts and Sciences and the Faculty of Medicine. The Ackerman Program at Harvard University fosters collaborations in the medical humanities and social sciences. From 2004 to 2008, he directed the Center for the Study of Diversity in Science, Technology, and Medicine at MIT, organizing a successful series of conferences about race, science, and technology. He is the author of Rationalizing Epidemics: Meanings and Uses of American Indian Mortality since 1600 (Harvard, 2004) and Broken Hearts: The Tangled History of Cardiac Care (Johns Hopkins, 2013). He is now at work on two books: on the evolution of coronary artery bypass surgery and on the history of heart disease and cardiac therapeutics in India.

Bonnie Kaiser, Medical Humanities Institute

Bonnie Kaiser
Bonnie Kaiser is a Post-Doctoral Associate in the Global Health Institute at Duke University. She conducts global mental health research with a focus on cultural aspects of measurement, communication, and intervention design. Dr. Kaiser holds a PhD in Anthropology and MPH in Epidemiology, and her work aims to bridge the methods and epistemologies of these fields in the study of mental health. She has conducted research on mental health in Haiti for 6 years; she has also worked in Nepal and Kenya. Her postdoctoral research explores how attention to culture can improve the development, adaptation, and evaluation of mental health interventions. Her articles have appeared in Global Public Health, Social Science & Medicine, Pan American Journal of Public Health, and International Journal of Culture and Mental Health, among others.

Felicia Knaul (Panelist - Medical Humanities Institute) -- cropped

Felicia Knaul
Felicia Marie Knaul is the Director of the University of Miami Institute for Advanced Study of the Americas (UMIA) and Professor at the Miller School of Medicine. She maintains a strong program of research and advocacy in Latin America, especially in Mexico, where she is the Senior Economist at the Mexican Health Foundation. As a result of her breast cancer experience, in 2008 Dr. Knaul founded Tómatelo a Pecho, a Mexico-based non-profit agency that promotes research, advocacy, awareness, and early detection in Latin America. She has lectured globally on the challenge of breast cancer in low and middle-income countries, both as patient-advocate and health systems researcher. Her areas of research are focused on global health and include cancer, women and health, health system strengthening and reform, health financing, and access to pain control and palliative care. From 2012-2015, she was a member of the Lancet Commission on Women and Health and a leading co-author of its June 2015 report.  She currently serves as the Chair of the Lancet Commission on Global Access to Palliative Care and Pain Control and President of the Latin American Union against Women’s Cancers (ULACCAM).

Erin Kobetz (Medical Humanities Institute)

Erin Kobetz
Erin Kobetz is an Associate Professor in the Department of Medicine, Public Health Sciences, and Obstetrics/Gynecology at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine. She is also the Director of the Jay Weiss Institute for Health Equity at Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer. Her research focuses on community-based participatory research, cancer prevention, and health disparities. In 2004, she established Patnè en Aksyon (Partners in Action), a campus-community partnership between the Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center and community-based organizations in Miami's Little Haiti. Dr. Kobetz has been honored with, among others, Marie Claire Heureuse Health Leadership Award; Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce, Healthcare Professional Award; Sylvester Professorship; and most recently the Health Choice Network’s Jessie Trice Hero Award. 

Louis Herns Marcelin Bio Photo (Medical Humanities Institute)

Louis Herns Marcelin
Louis Herns Marcelin is Associate Professor of Anthropology at the University of Miami. A sociocultural anthropologist whose research focuses on family and kinship in the Americas, he examines questions related to health and human security, and the roles of power, violence, and marginalization in society (esp. in Brazil, Haiti, the Dominican Republic, and the US). He has been awarded NIH/NIDA research grants to implement the Haitian Adolescent Study over 13 years to investigate the intersections of marginalization, health risks, drug use, gang violence, and immigration processes in South Florida. Among the studies he has produced, collaboratively, is the first national study on Violence Against Children (VACS) in Haiti, sponsored by and in partnership with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC); and the study of Public Policies, Migration, and Development in Haiti, a 10-country comparative case study sponsored by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).

Guillermo Prado - Dean of Graduate School (Bio Photo for Medical Humanities Institute Bio Page)

Guillermo Prado
Guillermo Prado is Dean of the Graduate School; the Leonard M. Miller Professor of Public Health Sciences; and the Director of the Division of Prevention Science and Community Health at the Miller School of Medicine. Prado led the development of the PhD program in Prevention Science and Community Health, as well as redesigned the epidemiology doctoral program. He has served as principal investigator of approximately $10 million of National Institutes of Health (NIH) funding. He also has served in the roles of mentor and co-investigator of approximately $60 million of NIH and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) funding, including a leadership role on two NIH-funded center grants. His research has appeared in more than 100 peer-reviewed publications, including The Journal of the American Medical Association, Pediatrics, American Journal of Public Health, and American Journal of Preventive Medicine.

Bio photo for Kate Ramsey (Medical Humanities Institute)

Kate Ramsey
Kate Ramsey is Associate Professor of History at the University of Miami, whose research interests include Caribbean intellectual history, artistic production, and social movements; histories of medicine and healing in the Atlantic world; and the connection between anthropology and history. She is the author of The Spirits and the Law: Vodou and Power in Haiti (Chicago, 2011), winner of the Berkshire Conference of Women Historians First Book Prize; the Elsa Goveia Book Prize, Association of Caribbean Historians; the Haiti Illumination Project Book Prize, Haitian Studies Association; and a Médaille Jean Price-Mars, Faculté d’Ethnologie, Université d’État d’Haïti. Ramsey is coeditor of Transformative Visions: Works by Haitian Artists from the Permanent Collection (Lowe Art Museum, 2015), based on the exhibition she co-curated in 2014. Her current project analyzes how early writings on Afro-Caribbean spiritual practices shaped and were shaped by medical ideas about the imagination in the 18th- and early 19th-century Atlantic world.

Day 2:  Medical Professionals and the Humanities

Jeffrey Brosco (Medical Humanities Institute) Bio Thumb Photo

Jeffrey Brosco
Jeffrey Brosco is Professor of Clinical Pediatrics; Chair, Jackson Health System's Pediatric Boethics Committee, University of Miami Miller School of Medicine; and Associate Director of the Mailman Center for Child Development. His research includes an analysis of the history of health care for children in early 20th-century Philadelphia, the historical epidemiology of intellectual disability, and the history of newborn screening in the US. With Diane Paul, he is co-author of The PKU Paradox: A Short History of a Genetic Disease (Johns Hopkins, 2013). His current work integrates history, ethics, and clinical practice to forge systems-level approaches to improving child health, especially regarding large-scale screening programs. He directs both medical student and pediatric resident education regarding ethics and professionalism at the University of Miami/Jackson Health Systems.

Kara Brown (bio photo) for the Medical Humanities Institute

Kara Brown
Dr. Kara Brown is an Instructor in Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School and an Associate Psychiatrist at Brigham Psychiatric Specialties. She specializes in the treatment of psychiatric concerns across the reproductive lifespan with a particular interest in perinatal mood and anxiety disorders, as well as racial disparities in mental health care. She developed an interest in medical humanities during her undergraduate years at the University of Miami, studying both English literature and biology. Dr. Brown completed her medical degree at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, her psychiatry residency training at Northwestern University, and a women’s mental health fellowship at Brigham and Women's Hospital. She has presented at the National Conference for Physician Scholars in the Social Sciences and Humanities where she spoke on the influence of gothic literature in the works of physician-writer Richard Selzer.

Kenneth W. Goodman
Kenneth W. Goodman is a Professor of Medicine at the University of Miami with appointments in the Departments of Anesthesiology, Philosophy, Health Informatics, Public Health Sciences, Electrical and Computer Engineering; and the School of Nursing and Health Studies. He is the founder and director of the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine’s Institute for Bioethics and Health Policy and codirector of the University’s Ethics Programs, designated a WHO Collaborating Center in Ethics and Global Health Policy. Dr. Goodman’s research has emphasized issues in health information technology, including bioinformatics for the use of computers in genetics, and in epidemiology and public health. His new book, Ethics, Medicine, and Information Technology: Intelligent Machines and the Transformation of Health Care (Cambridge, 2016) establishes the “core curriculum” in the new field of ethics and health information.

Joel Howell (Medical Humanities Institute Panelist)

Joel D. Howell
Joel D. Howell is Professor at the University of Michigan in the Departments of Internal Medicine (Medical School), Health Management and Policy (School of Public Health), and History (College of Literature, Science, and the Arts), as well as the Victor C. Vaughan Professor of the History of Medicine. He is the Senior Associate Director of the Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholars Program and Director of the Program in Society and Medicine. He has written widely on the use of medical technology, examining the social and contextual factors relevant to its clinical application and diffusion. He is the author of, among others, Technology in the Hospital: Transforming Patient Care in the Early Twentieth Century (Johns Hopkins, rev.ed. 1996). He is co-founder and director of the Medical Arts Program, a program funded by the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation to use the arts to help make medical students and residents become better physicians.

Joanna Johnson, PhD, Director of  Writing, Univ. of Miami

Joanna Johnson
Joanna Johnson, PhD, is the Director of Writing in the College of Arts & Sciences at the University of Miami, including the Writing Center on the Coral Gables and medical campuses, for which she provides support for faculty, post-doctoral fellows, and graduate students preparing grants and articles. She has recently helped develop a curriculum based on the relationship between scientific writing and the problem of reproducibility, especially in the biomedical and behavioral sciences. This in turn has been incorporated into the university’s programs to educate graduate students and post-doctoral fellows in the responsible conduct of research.

Esther Jones, PhD, Assistant Professor of English, Clark University (Medical Humanities Institute)

Esther L. Jones
Esther L. Jones is Associate Professor of English and the E. Franklin Frazier Chair of African American Literature, Theory, and Culture at Clark University. She is the author Medical Ethics in Black Women’s Speculative Fiction (Palgrave, 2015), which examines the constructions of black pathology and bioethics in science fiction by contemporary black women writers. Attending to the intersections of race, gender, sexuality, class, and disability, Jones explores historical constructions of difference within the medical establishment, the ways in which ethical paradigms and practices variously respond to embodied difference, and black women science fiction writers’ responses to ethics, empathy, and the politics of difference within medicine. 

Ashley Lawler (bio photo)

Ashley Lawler
Ashley Lawler is a Resident in Psychiatry at Harvard Longwood in Boston, Massachusetts. She completed a major in English and a minor in Spanish at the University of Florida. At the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, she participated in the Ethics and Humanities Medical Scholars Program; her thesis compared poetic meter to cardiac arrhythmias, and was featured on National Public Radio during National Poetry Month. She recently published a review of roadblocks to development of new antipsychotic treatments, and is currently working on research examining the effect of physical exercise on cognition in patients with chronic psychosis.

Benjamin Lemelman, MD, Resident, Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery, University of Chicago Medical Center (Medical Humanities Institute)

Benjamin Lemelman
Benjamin Lemelman is a Resident in Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery at the University of Chicago Medical Center. He attended the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine and was selected to participate in the Medical Scholars Program, with a focus on Ethics and Humanities. His project for the Pathway was a poetry chapbook (with photographs) on his experiences as a medical student, @Jackson. His surgical interests include microsurgery and pediatric plastic surgery. He is also passionate about healthcare technology and recently launched an App to help patients recover after surgery.

Mary Lindemann (calendar headshot)

Mary Lindemann
Mary Lindemann is Professor of History and department chair at the University of Miami. She works on early modern German, Dutch, and Flemish history as well as medical history in the early modern world. Her second book, Health and Healing in Eighteenth-Century Germany (Johns Hopkins, 1996), was awarded the American Association of the History of Medicine’s William H. Welch Medal. Medicine and Society in Early Modern Europe (Cambridge, 1999, rev. ed., 2010), has been translated into Spanish (2001), Portuguese (2003), and Turkish (2013). She has been the recipient of fellowships from, among others, the National Library of Medicine and the National Institutes of Health. She chaired the committee that established the minor in medical humanities in the College of Arts & Sciences at the University of Miami.

Bio photo for Laura Stone McGuire‌‌‌

Laura Stone McGuire
Laura Stone McGuire is currently a Resident in Neurosurgery at the University of Illinois at Chicago; her surgical and research interests include functional and vascular neurosurgery. As a medical student at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, she was selected to participate in the Ethics and Humanities Pathway.  Her project expanded on her undergraduate background in Speech Communication and examined Jenny McCarthy’s co-option of the second wave feminist rhetoric in the text, "Our Bodies, Ourselves."

Hester Oberman
Hester Oberman is a Lecturer in the Department of Religious Studies and the Medical Humanities Liaison for the College of Humanities at the University of Arizona. Her research focuses on the intersection between spiritual/religious experiences and observable scientific data, in particular the influence of faith traditions and spirituality on health care and medicine. She has published “A Postmodern Perspective on Mental Health, Spirituality, and Religion: Bridging Humanities and Scientific Views of Religion in the Twenty-first Century,” in Mental Health, Spirituality, and Religion in the Middle Ages and Early Modern Age (De Gruyter, 2014). Her current book project is titled Postmodern Perspectives on Mental Health, Spirituality, and Religion.

Danielle Ofri (Medical Humanities Institute)

Danielle Ofri
Danielle Ofri is a physician at Bellevue Hospital, the oldest public hospital in the country, and Associate Professor of Medicine at NYU. She writes regularly about medicine and the doctor-patient relationship for the New York Times. Her essays have also appeared in the Los Angeles Times, the Washington Post, the New England Journal of Medicine, the Lancet, and on CNN.com and National Public Radio. Her most recent book, What Patients Say; What Doctors Hear, was published by Beacon Press in 2017. Her essays have been selected by Stephen Jay Gould, Oliver Sacks, and Susan Orlean for The Best American Essays (twice) and Best American Science Writing. She is the recipient of the John P. McGovern Award from the American Medical Writers Association for “preeminent contributions to medical communication.” Dr. Ofri is co-founder and Editor-in-Chief of the Bellevue Literary Review, the first literary journal to arise from a medical setting.

Wilson Shearin, Assistant Professor of Classics, University of Miami

Wilson H. Shearin
Wilson H. Shearin is Associate Professor of Classics at the University of Miami and the author of The Language of Atoms: Performativity and Politics in Lucretius’ De Rerum Natura (Oxford, 2015). He teaches “Ancient Medicine” as part of the medical humanities minor in the College of Arts and Sciences. He is currently editing The Oxford Handbook of Roman Philosophy, which includes a chapter on ancient medicine, and writing on medical and therapeutic ideas in Nietzsche as part of a larger project on stupidity in Roman-period philosophy.


Maria Galli Stampino
Maria Galli Stampino is Professor in the Department of Modern Languages and Literatures, as well as Senior Associate Dean for Academic Affairs in the College of Arts and Sciences at the University of Miami. She is the author of Staging the Pastoral: Tasso's Aminta and the Emergence of Modern Western Theater (Medieval and Renaissance Texts and Studies, 2005) and the editor and translator of Lucrezia Marinella's Enrico, or Byzantium Conquered: Heroic Poem (Chicago, 2009). She directs the da Vinci Program, which aims to enhance the opportunities for freshmen and sophomores to explore the interdisciplinary connections among the sciences, social sciences, arts, and humanities. The program emphasizes connections between humanistic and scientific inquiry and their modes of understanding, and seeks to define the distinctive elements that humanities classes can offer to STEM-focused students.

Profile photo for Mihoko Suzuki (2016)‌‌

Mihoko Suzuki
Mihoko Suzuki is Director of the Center for the Humanities and Professor of English, University of Miami. During fall 2016, she was Ruth and Clarence Kennedy Professor in Renaissance Studies at Smith College. In addition to serving on the faculty advisory board of the Ethics and Humanities Pathway at the Miller School of Medicine, Suzuki has promoted medical humanities at the University of Miami by inviting speakers to campus such as Anna Deavere Smith, who performed a one-woman play on the doctor-patient relationship based on interviews she conducted at Yale-New Haven hospital; Robert Proctor, Professor of History of Science, Stanford, an expert on the tobacco industry; and Alice Dreger, historian of medicine and science, who has studied the history of the treatment of intersex individuals; and Siddhartha Mukherjee, the oncologist at Columbia University and the Pulitzer-Prize winning author of The Emperor of all Maladies and The Gene.

Hope Torrents
Hope Torrents initiated the Fine Art of Health Care program at the Lowe Museum at the University of Miami in 2009. The interdisciplinary partnership program, which has attracted over 1,000 participants from the Miller School of Medicine and the School of Nursing and Health Studies, uses art to hone observation and communication skills in the service of clinical diagnosis. She has made presentations concerning the program at various local and national conferences, including at the Art of Examination Conference held at the Museum of Modern Art, New York.