Dec 23, 2010-- In a world that prizes medical science and blames illness on factors such as genes, viruses, bacteria or poor diet, certain perplexing cases stand out. Consider Mr. Wright, a man whose tumors "melted like snowballs on a hot stove" when he was given an experimental drug that he believed would cure his cancer, but was later declared to be worthless by the American Medical Association. His case is just one of several that underscore the idea that the mind matters in sickness and health. In "The Cure Within," Harvard Professor Anne Harrington proposes that we're persuaded not only by science but also by stories, especially a key set of narratives that humans have told about the mind and body through history. These narratives give vocabulary for complex experiences like discontent and hope. "Stories can do things that science can't," she observes. (4973 reads)
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