This issue of our newsletter is sent to members and friends of the Emory University Emeritus College (EUEC). I hope the newsletter will help keep you informed about our activities and help you feel connected with our members throughout the U.S. On the left are links to our website and links to contact either me or the EUEC office.
With best wishes,
Gray F. Crouse
Message from the Director
March has been an incredibly busy month for EUEC, with a series of outstanding programs and events. April will be more relaxed, but is punctuated by one of our major programs of the year--the Sheth Distinguished Lecture. We are very fortunate to have Dean James Curran to deliver the lecture and I hope many of you will be able to attend. Please note that because lunch is provided, we need to have an accurate count of attendees and so it is necessary to register no later than April 11. Details on the lecture and reservations are below.
The reception for our award winners, new members, and donors was a special event. We had an impressive set of winners--so much so that even the Irish Consul attended--and it seemed that everyone who attended was inspired and enjoyed each other's company! Tiffany Stern's talk capped off a remarkable set of Lunch Colloquiums during the month, and we get a bonus, as Gretchen Schulz writes about a separate talk Stern gave on the Oxford Campus. This is the start of many events celebrating the exhibition of a Shakespeare First Folio at Emory. You can read more about all of that below.
I am very grateful to John Bugge, Herb Benario, and Gretchen Schulz for help with proofing and editing.
Sheth Distinguished Lecture
Wednesday, April 13, 11:30-1:00, Governors Hall, Miller-Ward Alumni House
The Sheth Distinguished Lecture on Creativity in Later Life will be on April 13. We are extremely fortunate to have Dean James Curran of the Rollins School of Public Health as our speaker.Click here for more information on the lecture and how to register
EUEC Hosts GA-HERO
EUEC hosted a GA-HERO meeting on Friday, April 1.
Lunch Colloquium March 28
"Playing Fair": Fairgrounds and Shakespeare
Tiffany Stern, Professor of Early Modern Drama, Oxford University, Beaverbrook and Bouverie Fellow and Tutor in English, University College
What I've Been Reading
Below is the first submission to our new series in which members describe a book they believe would be interesting for other members. More submissions are most welcome!Click here to read about Being Mortal
The following is from the Executive Director, Office of University Events:
As always, we wish to extend the invitation to march and sit with the faculty to the emeritus faculty members. If you would, please share the registration link and directions below with any emeritus faculty member wishing to march.
The registration site for faculty Commencement participation is now open:
If you plan to march in the all-schools central Quadrangle ceremony procession and sit on the faculty risers on Monday May 9, please take a moment to register. Note the new 9:00 a.m. ceremony start time. We need an accurate count in order to set up the correct number of chairs on the risers.
We received the following from Mary Bower. This seems to be a great opportunity to help in research particularly relevant to seniors and earn a bit of spending money as well!
I am a research nurse at Emory University's Hope Clinic. We are doing a study with the CDC on people 65yo and older. We need 1100 people in the metro Atlanta to volunteer to help. We would like to reach out to the Emeritus College and see if there are interested volunteers. The study involves gaining consent for each volunteer, reviewing a short list of inclusion criteria, getting a short health history (including pneumococcal vaccine history) and swabbing their nose and throat. Each volunteer will be given a $25 Kroger or Publix gift card as a token of appreciation.
Mary B. Bower, RN, BSN
Clinical Research Nurse II
The Hope Clinic of Emory University
500 Irvin Ct., Suite 200
Decatur, GA 30030
Once again, our members are invited to participate in a program offered by the Caregiver Support Program:
Do you need help managing stress as a caregiver?
Are you having difficulty juggling work and caregiving simultaneously?
If you answered yes to one or both of the questions above, you may want to attend the following free workshop:
Join us for our newest caregiver workshop addressing "How to Make Stress Your Friend."
Participants will view and discuss the TED Talk "How to Make Stress Your Friend" and learn strategies for embracing stress.
Caregiver Resilience: How to Make Stress Your Friend
April 19, 2016
School of Nursing, 203
Facilitated by: Robin Huskey, LCSW Faculty Staff Assistance Program
Sheth Distinguished Lecture
James W. Curran, MD, MPH
Dean, Rollins School of Public Health
In 1995 James W. Curran was appointed Professor of Epidemiology and Dean of the Rollins School of Public Health.
Graduating from the University of Notre Dame, he received his MD from the University of Michigan and a Master of Public Health from Harvard University. In 1981 Dr. Curran coordinated the task force on acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS) at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and then led the HIV/AIDS Division. While at the CDC, he attained the rank of the Assistant Surgeon General.
Dr. Curran is a fellow of the American Epidemiologic Society, the American College of Preventive Medicine, and the Infectious Diseases Society of America. Author or co-author of more than 260 scholarly publications, he was elected to the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences in 1993. He was given the Surgeon General's Medal of Excellence in 1996 and the John Snow Award from the American Public Health Association in 2003.
Dr. Curran is an adjunct Professor of Medicine and Nursing and Co-Director and Principal Investigator of the Emory Center for AIDS Research. He is immediate past Chair of the Board on Population Health and Public Health Practice of the Institute of Medicine and served on the Executive Committee of the Association of Schools of Public Health. Additionally, he holds an endowed chair known as the James W. Curran Dean of Public Health.
The Lecture and Lunch are made possible by a generous donation from Dr. Jagdish and Mrs. Madhu Sheth. The lecture is also sponsored by the Emory Alumni Association.
The lecture will be in Governors Hall in the Miller-Ward Alumni House on April 13, 11:30-1:00.
Reservations are necessary, and may be made by clicking here.
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EUEC Hosts GA-HERO
On Friday, the first of April, the Emeritus College Director Gray Crouse welcomed sixteen representatives from academic retirement organizations across the state of Georgia.
The occasion was the semi-annual meeting of GA-HERO, the Georgia Association of Higher Education Retiree Organizations
, a consortium that includes about a dozen institutions, almost all of them, unlike Emory, members of the University System of Georgia - Georgia State, Georgia Tech, Kennesaw State, Georgia Perimeter, Clayton State, West Georgia University, Valdosta State, among others.
The topic for the day was "Helping Younger Colleagues Get Their Heads around Retirement"; it centered on the advantages that pre-retirement counseling by retired faculty can bring to colleagues about to go through that transition.
EUEC member Stephen Nowicki, Candler Professor of Psychology Emeritus, provided a keynote presentation on the all-important psychological aspects of the retirement process and graciously consented to allow GA-HERO to post his accompanying PowerPoint presentation on its Web site. (He had given a similar talk to Emory pre-retirees at a very successful session sponsored by the Emeritus College on the second of March. That talk may be viewed by clicking here.)
Other Emory attendees at this meeting were Julianne Daffin, Gretchen Schulz, Holly York, and John Bugge, who is the Vice-President and Treasurer of GA-HERO.
The role the Emeritus College plays in GA-HERO continues to provide us with a very useful window into the operations of our counterparts in the state's system of higher education.
EUEC Awards and New Members Reception
On March 21, EUEC had a reception to honor our various award winners, our new members, and all of our donors. The venue was the new location of OLLI, the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute, located at 6 Executive Park (next door to its old location). The OLLI staff were very gracious hosts and we had the use of their largest classroom space, which was large enough to house our ceremony and the reception.
Lynn Zimmerman, Senior Vice Provost for Academic Affairs, to whom EUEC reports, brought greetings from the Office of the Provost and stressed the importance of EUEC to the University.
Robin Foreman, Dean of Emory College of Arts and Sciences, presented the 2015 Heilbrun Distinguished Emeritus Fellowship to Paul Courtright, Professor Emeritus of Religion.
Paul Courtright and Robin Foreman
Paul was awarded the fellowship in order to complete his book project, The Goddess and the Dreadful Practice. The book explores the mythologies of the Hindu goddess Sati and their connections with the practice of the immolation of wives on the funeral pyres of their deceased husbands. The latter has been a controversial issue in pre-colonial India and especially in the colonial and post-colonial periods. The Helbrun Fellowship is providing important resources for Courtright to complete his book. He has been able to work nearly full time and bring his long-standing research efforts to conclusion due to the fellowship support.
Distinguished Faculty and Service Awards
The EUEC Distinguished Faculty and Service Awards were presented by the member(s) who nominated the recipient, with the exception of the award to Gene Gangarosa, as neither of the nominators was able to attend; the award was instead presented by Joanne McGriff.
John Bugge presented a Distinguished Faculty Award to James W. Flannery, Winship Professor Emeritus of the Arts and Humanities.
John's remarks included the following:
James Flannery's career as an active faculty member at Emory lasted thirty years, ending in his retirement from active status in August of 2012 as the Winship Professor of Arts and Humanities Emeritus
Over his three decades at Emory he accomplished many signal achievements:
- He founded the present Theater Emory in 1982 and helped integrate it with the Department of Theater Studies; it is now nationally recognized as an innovative hybrid enterprise of faculty, active professionals, and students.
- In 1988 he founded the international W.B. Yeats Foundation at Emory to promote greater understanding and appreciation of Yeats as a poet, dramatist, and cultural activist.
- From 1989 to 1993 he was the Executive Director of the Yeats International Theatre Festival at Dublin's Abbey Theatre, the National Theatre of Ireland.
- In 2002 Flannery was honored with a Governor's Award in the Humanities by the Georgia Humanities Council for helping to advance understanding of the influence of Irish culture on the heritage and distinctive culture of the American South.
- In 2004 he helped to found the Irish Studies Program in the College of Arts and Sciences.
- In 2010 he was named an International Associate Artist at the Abbey, where he continues to work on developing a Yeats Creative and Performing Arts Studio.
- In his years as an active faculty member at Emory, Flannery carried on his active research, contributing articles to The New York Times, Performing Arts Journal, and the Irish University Review, and producing a revised edition of his definitive study, W.B Yeats and the Idea of a Theatre: The Early Abbey Theatre in Theory and Practice (Yale, 1989).
Flannery's retirement in 2012 did not see any diminution of his activities. For the last three and a half years he has been engaged in ventures that either carry on work begun earlier or constitute new initiatives entirely.
- In the first category, his very successful local production of the Southern Celtic Christmas Concert is now being distributed nationally by American Public Television to PBS stations across the country. Featuring top talents in Southern and Irish traditional music and a rare interview with the late Seamus Heaney, the program won the Southeast Emmy Award in Outstanding Achievement in Arts and Entertainment in 2012.
- Flannery also continues to serve as a member of the Global Irish Network; he was appointed to the position by the Irish government in 2010 to advise on issues related to the "Irish diaspora."
- For the past two years Flannery has been engaged as an advisor to a group from the city of Sligo, which is developing a Yeats Interpretive Center featuring W.B. Yeats and his father, the painter Jack Yeats.
- In June of 2015 Flannery collaborated with the Irish Consulate of Atlanta to produce at the Carlos Museum a program of readings, critical commentaries, and musical performances entitled Still Here/Here Still on the enduring power of Yeats's artistry and poetic philosophy.
- In 2015 Flannery was elected President of the Metropolitan Atlanta Association of Phi Beta Kappa; in that capacity, he organized a series of lectures on issues important to the University community.
- Professor Flannery continues with his academic research and writing on two fronts: a book - which will include audio recordings - entitled Heart Mysteries: Traditional Love Songs of Ireland; and a second book, entitled Memories and Prophesies: A Theatrical Analysis of the Plays of W.B. Yeats.
In his "retirement" James Flannery continues to be a highly active scholar, teacher, and critic - and the world's leading expert on the drama of W. B. Yeats. He remains, as well, an accomplished artistic performer, academic administrator, and theatrical entrepreneur. In all these roles he graces the Emeritus College as one of Emory's leading public intellectuals.
Joanne McGriff, Assistant Research Professor in the Hubert Department of Global Health, and Associate Director for the Center for Global Safe Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene in the Rollins School of Public Health presented a Distinguished Faculty Award to Eugene J. Gangarosa in the absence of the nominators for that award, Donna Brogan and Christine Moe.
Gene Gangarosa and Joanne McGriff
Her remarks included the following:
Dr. Gangarosa has made extraordinary contributions to global public health during the 24 years after his 1991 retirement from the Rollins School of Public Health (RSPH) at Emory University.
He has become the elder statesman of enteric (intestinal) disease epidemiology, a public health subspecialty that has saved tens of millions of lives since the late 1960s through oral rehydration therapy for acute diarrheal illnesses. Via his unfailing scientific support, as well as financial support (through his family foundation established in 1994), he continues to champion point-of-use safe water vessels and low-cost sanitation technologies, practices that save tens of thousands of lives annually through disease prevention.
Dr. Gangarosa and his wife Rose established two endowed professorships in the RSPH: Dr. Gangarosa's chair promoting safe water in the Hubert Department of Global Health and Rose Salamone Gangarosa's chair promoting sanitation in the Department of Environmental Health.
Dr. Gangarosa is a rare example of a true "scientist and gentleman." He treats students, colleagues, friends and all others with kindness and respect. He is a global voice for social justice and the human right for access to safe drinking water and sanitation. Finally, he is incredibly modest about his significant scientific contributions, his major impact on thousands of public health professionals as mentor and teacher, and his generous family donations to public health.
Gretchen Schulz presented a Distinguished Faculty Award to Rudolf A. Makkreel, Charles Howard Candler Professor Emeritus of Philosophy.
Rudi Makkreel and Gretchen Schulz
Her citation read in part,
[The] EUEC Faculty Award of Distinction is intended to recognize University faculty (and EUEC members) who have made "[s]ignificant professional contributions since retirement to Emory University or its affiliated institutions as well as contributions to local, state, regional, national, or international communities or professional organizations that reflect the 'spirit of Emory.'" I think it unlikely that there is another emeritus faculty member who has made more such contributions than Rudi Makkreel, whose scholarly work since his "retirement" in 2011 has considerably lengthened his already remarkably long list of books written and edited, contributions to books, articles for journals, and presentations at conferences (often by special invitation). The most impressive and important of these is no doubt the new book published by the University of Chicago Press just this year, Orientation and Judgment in Hermeneutics, a book . . . that Rudi completed with the help of some funding from the Heilbrun Fellowship he received in 2014-2015 . . . I quote from an online review:
This book provides an innovative approach to meeting the challenges faced by philosophical hermeneutics in interpreting an ever-changing and multicultural world. Rudolf A. Makkreel proposes an orientational and reflective conception of interpretation in which judgment plays a central role. . . . He shows that a crucial task of hermeneutical critique is to establish priorities among the contexts that may be brought to bear on the interpretation of history and culture. . . . [and] offers a promising way of thinking about the shifting contexts that we bring to bear on interpretations of all kinds, whether of texts, art works, or the world.
I hope the Awards Committee will see fit to honor [this and the many other] achievements of this scholar (and gentleman) who is shining brighter than ever as a luminary in his field here in the fifth year after he (supposedly) retired--by selecting him for one of our EUEC Faculty Awards of Distinction.
Gretchen Schulz presented the Distinguished Service Award to Morton Waitzman, Professor Emeritus of Ophthalmology and Physiology.
Gretchen Schulz and Mort Waitzman
Her citation read in part,
As you will know, the Distinguished Service Award is intended to recognize members of the EUEC who have made "[s]ignificant documented contributions of service to Emory University or its affiliated institutions as well as to local, state, regional, national or international communities or other organizations that reflect the 'spirit of Emory,'" contributions that "must have been made since retirement." One wonders (I certainly wonder) if any Emory retiree has ever made more impactful contributions of service in the many spheres identified here than our own Morton B. Waitzman, who retired as Professor of Ophthalmology and Physiology in 1991, a full 25 years ago. Given his record of achievement in his field before his retirement, a very impressive record, indeed, it might have been expected that his most notable further achievements would be in that field, as well. But in fact, in 1991, he'd not even begun to perform the service that has meant so much to so many since, namely, the service of bearing witness to the horrors of World War II and the atrocities of the Holocaust in particular.
Like so many survivors who had experience of both, Mort had not spoken of that experience, to family, to friends, to anyone, trying hard to relegate the dreadful memories to the past, however much they haunted his dreams. But when he returned to Normandy in 1994, on the 50th anniversary of the D-Day invasion in which he had participated, he realized that there were fewer every day in a position to share such dreadful memories and so counteract the persistent voices of those who would deny that the Holocaust had ever happened. As one of the diminishing number of those who liberated thousands of victims from Nazi labor camps and concentration camps--and one of those who arrived too late to save thousands more whom the Nazis killed just before fleeing--Mort realized he had a responsibility to speak out. And, painful though it was, and still is, for him to do so, he has done so, at every opportunity, in the many years since then.
. . . . Mort understands what Elie Wiesel has said: "To hear a witness is to become a witness oneself." And those of us who've been fortunate enough to hear him speak (as he did in a special EUEC Lunch Colloquium last May) emerged from that program understanding what Elie Wiesel has said, as well. It's no wonder that the William Breman Jewish Heritage Museum right here in Atlanta featured Mort in their Bearing Witness series at just this time last year. And it's no wonder that he and his story have been preserved for posterity in [major collections of interviews on the subject, including one right here at Emory . . . accessible on the EUEC website.)
Though Mort's service during the war won him many honors then (including a Bronze Star) and is winning him honors still (most recently induction into the French Legion of Honor in a ceremony conducted by the newly appointed Consul General of France in Atlanta), his service since his retirement in sharing the story of the war as he experienced it hasn't won him honors yet--not that I'm aware of. It is my hope that the EUEC can begin to offer him the recognition he deserves for witnessing to the events of that time, so painful for him to speak, so painful for us to hear, but so very necessary, by selecting him for the 2016 Distinguished Service Award.
2015 EUEC New Members and Donors
A complete list of members who had joined EUEC since our last reception and a list of those who had made donations since the beginning of our 2015-2016 campaign that began in August can be seen by clicking here.
New members who were able to attend the ceremony were individually recognized. Thanks to the generosity of OLLI, new members were presented with a certificate entitling them to take an OLLI course for free-in the hopes that they might be inspired to one day teach in OLLI!
The list of donors was very impressive: there were 140 individuals or couples who made donations to EUEC, providing vital support to our activities.
The program also listed the 22 members who had died in the previous year; that list may be seen by clicking here.
Lunch Colloquium March 28
"Playing Fair": Fairgrounds and Shakespeare
Tiffany Stern, Professor of Early Modern Drama, Oxford University, Beaverbrook and Bouverie Fellow and Tutor in English, University College
A large Emeritus College crowd was present to participate in a "kick-off" event for Emory's "Year of Shakespeare," as the group listened to Professor Tiffany Stern elaborate on the contextual elements that influenced the plays of Shakespeare. Dr. Stern divided her presentation into three main parts:
Part 1: The physical relationship between Fairs and theaters
Fairs and theaters provided a mainstay of entertainment for the British people during the time of Shakespeare. Socially mixed groups attended both. The two primary London fairs lasted for nearly a month (August/September) each year, and were located in close physical proximity to the theaters. It was interesting to note that the Lord Mayor of London (in all his finery - purple robes and pearl-bedecked sword) opened the fairs each year, and this same Lord Mayor often attempted to censor and shut down many of the theaters in London (because of Puritan influences). The fairs actually won out in the hierarchy of fair vs. theater, for the theaters were often closed down (summer hiatus) throughout the month that the fairs were in full swing. In fact, the theaters sometimes served as a type of boardinghouse, where those attending the fairs could find lodging for two pence per night.
Dr. Stern pointed out that the fairs had their own judicial system which was operational throughout the time of the fair. Pickpockets or "cut purse" artists were found in large numbers throughout the fairgrounds. To emphasize this point, Professor Stern used a quote from Ben Jonson's play Bartholomew Faire or Variety of Fancies, "As lent is to the fishmonger, so is Bartholomew faire to the pickpocket; it is his high harvest." Petty crimes and misdemeanors occurring on the fairgrounds were dealt with by this Prepoudries Court ("dusty feet" court). The punishment doled out by this court usually involved public ridicule - a somewhat theatrical punishment in itself.
Part 2: Theater using/incorporating examples from the Fairgrounds
Professor Stern provided several examples of acts/exhibits at the fairgrounds that were incorporated into plays being performed in the theater. A good example was the fairground "performing monkey" act which was incorporated into several Shakespeare and Ben Jonson plays. The monkey "dies" when "bad things" are mentioned (i.e. Turks, the Roman Catholic Pope, the King of Spain, etc.) and the monkey revives or comes "back alive" at the mention of "good things" (King of England, the Good Prince). Plays cited by Dr. Stern that used this "performing monkey" theme included Romeo and Juliet and Hamlet, with Hamlet conversing with Ophelia). Shakespeare refers to another fairground act - the dancing horse Moroccus -- in Love's Labours Lost. The final example used by Professor Stern was the "vanishing banquet table" act, often performed at fairgrounds, which was utilized by Shakespeare in The Tempest.
Part 3: Fairgrounds embracing the theater
Puppet shows had long been a major part of the entertainment at the yearly fairs, and the puppet characters were often derived from the characters in theater productions. Sometimes whole theater productions then became puppet shows at subsequent fairs. Puppet shows thus extended the life of popular plays and theater characters and gave them an "afterlife" or alternative life. Puppet shows also took the liberty of combining characters from several different stage plays into a single puppet show and often changed the setting to incorporate different exotic cities and locations.
Queen Elizabeth often "clamped down" on live stage plays in the morality or mystery tradition of dramatized religious story. Plays with political implications were often censored, too. However, puppet shows did not receive such scrutiny from the powers-that-were. Because puppet shows did not have a written script, they were not censored like theatrical plays. The puppet master could gauge his audience, and could tailor the script of the puppet show to that audience (more or less "edgy" as needed) without fear of censorship.
Professor Stern concluded her presentation by stating that during the Civil War in Great Britain when Oliver Crowmell and the Puritans took over the government (1642-1660) all the performing theaters were closed. So, during that time, the fairs - in particular the puppet shows - provided the bulk of the artistic/theatrical entertainment for the people of England.
Dr. Stern fielded several questions from the audience following her presentation. Many questions dealt with the First Folio exhibition coming to Emory in November and the great opportunity this poses to people in the Emory and Atlanta communities to view one of the great historical documents of early modern drama.
Emory's own preeminent Shakespearean, Dr. Sheila Cavanagh, concluded the Lunch Colloquium by urging us to take advantage of this opportunity-and to attend any and all of the many other offerings she and her planning committee have scheduled in support of the Folio visit and the "Year of Shakespeare," not least the two versions of As You Like It that Theater Emory is offering in the next couple of weeks, one all-male and one all-female, and two special exhibits now available in the Woodruff Library, one The Bard on [Post]Cards and the second, Shakespeare's Natural Worlds. See the Shakespeare at Emory web site for full information.
--Linda J. Pine
Shakespeare and the Secrets of the First Folio
On Monday evening at Oxford College, and Tuesday afternoon in the Woodruff Library, Tiffany Stern delivered lectures on Shakespeare and the First Folio. Below is a report on her talk at Oxford:
On Monday evening, March 28, on the Oxford College campus, members of the College and the Oxford/Covington community joined in a celebration that is going on county-wide, state-wide, country-wide, and, indeed, world-wide during this year, the 400th year since the death of William Shakespeare. A lecture on "Shakespeare and the Secrets of the First Folio" was offered by a specialist in Shakespeare from "the other Oxford," as those of us in this Oxford community like to call it. Dr. Tiffany Stern, a Professor of Early Modern Drama at Oxford University and the Beaverbrook and Bouverie Fellow and Tutor in English at University College there, shared fascinating information on "the book that gave us Shakespeare," the first collection of his plays, assembled by two of the actors in the company of actors to which Shakespeare belonged and published in 1623, seven years after his death in 1616.
The collection is the only original source for 18 of Shakespeare's plays, and without it, those plays unpublished during his lifetime, acclaimed by consensus as some of the greatest plays ever written, wouldn't be known to us at all, plays like "Macbeth," "Julius Caesar," "Twelfth Night," and "As You Like It." It is hard to imagine the body of world literature without such works in it! And there is no one anywhere who knows more than Dr. Stern does about the process by which a variety of written and printed and enacted versions of the plays (and bits of the plays) finally yielded the Folio versions thereof--a process that involved innumerable challenges for the editors of the book and that resulted in not a few oddities and errors that have been challenging everyone else ever since.
Only a few original copies of the First Folio can still be found, of which some are in the possession of the Folger Shakespeare Library on Washington, D.C. And it was planning for the celebration of the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare's death that prompted the Folger to send several of its Folios forth on a national traveling exhibition, choosing one site in each state (one from among many applicants) to host a Folio visit--and coordinate it with a variety of other Shakespeare-related activities. Thanks to Emory's own pre-eminent Shakespearean, Sheila Cavanagh, and the exciting plethora of plans proffered by the planning committee she gathered from Emory and beyond, Emory University was chosen as the host site for Georgia, and though the Folio itself will not be on display in the Carlos Museum on the Atlanta campus of the University until the fall, the rich roster of "Shakespeare-related activities" began right here at Emory's birthplace with the lecture by Dr. Stern on Monday evening. She gave Folio talks in Atlanta on Tuesday and Wednesday, as well, but we were the first to hear what she had to say on "The Secrets of the First Folio." And this reporter can report that the talk was much enjoyed by all. Thanks to the College, and in particular the Pierce Institute at the College, and to the Oxford College Community Classroom program for sponsoring Dr. Stern's visit. We will keep you apprised as other events of interest to Shakespeareans in the area are scheduled, "to be or not to be" attended as you please.
--Gretchen Schulz, as written for the Covington News
Click here to see the website of Folio-related activities at Emory
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What I've Been Reading
Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End
by Atul Gawande
Book report by Stewart Roberts, Jr. M.D.
My Dad died at home when I was nine years old. Three aunts came to take me and my younger brother Bill from our farm to nearby Stone Mountain while the hearse came to take Dad's body to the funeral home. My grandmother died in her daughter's home. Before 1945 most people died in their homes. Now, most die in nursing homes, hospitals or assisted living facilities. Death away from home is very expensive and shoots up Medicare costs.
Atul Gawande, M.D. is a Harvard surgeon. When a surgeon writes a book, pay attention, for he has something important to say. Being Mortal
is a number 1 New York Times
best-seller about striving for the best individual path to death. Several interesting stories follow about the development of assisted living homes, nursing homes, doctor-patient relationships, and end-of-life stories of three individuals who, aided by Dr. Gawande, made their own health choices to the very end.
A young girl grew up witnessing the needs of her grandmother who had suffered a stroke and lived in their home. Later, as a married academic, she and her husband designed and built the country's first Assisted Living Home in Portland, Oregon, in 1982, a concept rapidly emulated across the country. The idea was to provide independent living for its residents, with step-wise increasing levels of care as needed. There is a constant conflict between the freedom of the independent resident and the organizational needs of uniformity of care and safety.
Bill Thomas was a bright but defiant kid, a "super salesman." He could always handle rejection! He graduated from Harvard Medical School and in an era of sub-specialization chose Family Medicine. Later with family and farm responsibilities, he traded in his ER night shift to become Director of a nursing home. He was immediately disturbed by the lifeless atmosphere within the nursing home and he set out to attack its boredom, loneliness, and helplessness. With the cooperation of staff, authorities, and politicians, he brought LIFE into the nursing home. Live plants and two parakeets were placed in each room; dogs and cats enlivened the residents who took on their active care, and the front lawn was converted to a garden, planted and attended by residents. Happy and involved residents now shared their activities with staff enlivening conversations all around.
Social research found people did better in groups of twenty or fewer. In Boston, the New Bridge nursing home was designed and built around small pods, "a household," with rooms for sixteen residents surrounding a common living space with dining room, kitchen and activity room -- like a household, designed to improve the life of the residents.
Hospice care and home hospice care are relatively new developments for the dying patient. Home hospice care is a strong addition for those who wish to die at home among family. Home hospice care by trained professionals is comforting, supportive, and instructive.
In 1992, two medical ethicists described three patterns of doctor-patient relationships: the paternalistic, informative and interpretive. The paternalistic is an authoritarian: "Dr. Knows Best -- You need this surgical procedure...or you will get worse." (Fee unknown.) Watch out! Next is the informative: "Dr. Informative" lists the therapeutic options and the patient makes a selection. (Fee unknown.) The interpretive doctor lists all therapeutic options and assists the patient in making the best individual choice. (Fee unknown.) A cancer surgeon may first inquire, "What is important to you? What are your concerns?" Such information leads to a SHARED DECISION between doctor and patient.
Almost two decades after medical school, Gawande became quite concerned about "an avalanche of unnecessary medical care harming patients physically and financially." ("Overkill..." The New Yorker
, May 11, 2015) Expanding on these thoughts one might suggest a WRITTEN DOCUMENT between doctor and patient well in advance of a proposed surgical or expensive diagnostic procedure. Such a written document would list the specific indications for the proposed procedure, its contraindications, complications, outcomes, options and fees. This document is signed, witnessed, dated and copied to the patient. The patient is better informed and protected and the doctor and institution more accountable. There would be less surgery.
I am a doctor myself, and my experience confirms that doctors are detail-oriented. Surgeons by nature may be particularly obsessive-compulsive, perhaps less skilled in verbal communication. The most technically proficient may even occupy a lower rung on the ladder of the autistic spectrum disorder and be given to occasional angry outbursts. The uninformed patient is not protected from unnecessary surgery. There are no "lemon laws" for inappropriate surgery. Once performed, inappropriate surgery cannot be undone. The patient and society are more protected by the INFORMATIVE PATIENT DOCUMENT.
Dr. Gawande brings the reader along on the end-of-life journey of three patients, one of whom is his active father, a surgeon. Palliative physicians have learned to ask a question, await an answer, then ask another question. "What is it you understand about your illness?" Await answer. "What are your fears?" Await answer. "What is important to you?" Await answer. Each of the three lives demonstrates the wonder of freedom of choice to the very end, when physics and biology take over and life ends. It takes courage for doctors and institutions and society to change our healthcare at the end of life. What is your understanding of the two-word title, Being Mortal
1. Flatlined. Resuscitating American Medicine
, by Guy L. Clifton, MD, Rutgers University Press, 2009
2. Unaccountable. What Hospitals Won't Tell You and How Transparency Can Revolutionize Healthcare
, by Marty Mkary, MD, Bloomsburg Press, 2012
3. Waking Up Blind. Lawsuits Over Eye Surgery
, by Tom Harbin, MD, Langdon Street Press, 2009.
4. All in the Timing: From Operating Room to the Board Room
, by Charles R. Hatcher, Jr., MD, Author House, 2011
5 When Breath Becomes Air
, by Paul Kalanithi, MD, Random House, 2016 Click here to return to top
Walking the campus with Dianne
Did you figure out where the interesting piece of art was located? It can be found in the courtyard-patio area between the Chemistry and Psychology buildings. In that same area, there is also a garden space that, last time I looked, was home to an amazing crop of horsetail grass. Take a look whenever you are in that area, it's quite nice.
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Emory University Emeritus College
The Luce Center
825 Houston Mill Road NE #206
Atlanta, GA 30329