Prescribed Reading: Reflective Medical Narratives and the Rise of the Medimoir: An Interview with Adam Kay

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Abstract

The 21st century has witnessed the rise of a genre of literature that has taken both the reading public and the publishing industry by storm. The ‘medimoir’—or medical memoir—is not in itself a new genre of writing, but has risen to prominence in a contemporary British context of renewed focus on public health and wellbeing, a proliferation of professional confessionals in publishing, and debates about the future of the free-at-point-of-care British National Health Service (NHS). The most prolific medimoir published to date is Adam Kay’s This Is Going to Hurt (2017), a reflective diary that chronicles his time as a trainee gynaecologist in the NHS, and his subsequent exit from medical training in the face of growing personal and political pressures on his profession. This article contextualises and considers the rise of the medimoir, and examines why this genre of medical narrative has become such a critical, literary, and publishing success in the first two decades of the new millennium.
Original languageEnglish
Article number130
Number of pages7
JournalHumanities
Volume7
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 7 Dec 2018

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