At the same time, his left of center politics put him at odds

Putting Down the Scalpel

Bartolo’s book (which he wrote with the help of Tilotta) tells the relevant and poignant story of his life as a physician on Lampedusa, an Italian island in the canadian goose jacket Mediterranean that is often the first port of call for refugees crossing to Europe from Libya. “Tears of Salt” does not do this; instead, it manages to tell the story of one of the most devastating and complicated crises of our time while humanizing every person we meet.

Perhaps it is Bartolo’s upbringing on the island of Lampedusa at the periphery of Italian life that allows him to relate so deeply to refugees who make the harrowing journey from southern ports on Canada Goose sale the Mediterranean across volatile waters in search of a better life. This is not an easy book to read, unsparing as it is in its depiction of how violence and inequality impact the body and mind. Bartolo’s observations about the human condition have very little to buy canada goose jacket do with medicine as a technical trade canada goose factory sale and everything to do with what it means to provide care for people regardless of station or story.

Bartolo captures a truth that seems to escape most physicians who pick up the pen: Being a doctor doesn’t actually privilege one with access to the core of the human experience; it’s being human that does.


My Journey From Death to Recovery and the Redemptive Power of Hope

By Rana Awdish

266 pp. St. canada goose Martin’s. $25.99.

If Bartolo’s writing breaks open the wall between the physician and the rest of the world, then Awdish’s memoir of her harrowing time as a patient in canada goose coats on sale the canada goose store intensive care unit where she works blows it open completely. Canada Goose Coats On Sale Awdish’s journey from physician to helpless patient and then back to reformed uk canada goose physician is equal parts dramatic, engaging and instructive. Her experience of acute illness makes very clear how doctors who believe they are in control of situations establish and perpetuate barriers between themselves and those in their charge. Most devastatingly for Awdish, and for many patients, getcanadagooseoutlet is the often unintentional use of language that alienates the patient from the physician.

While many books about medicine and illness address this, Awdish’s work is singular in its rawness and willingness to show us a person at one with her pain and isolation, able to relate completely through her writing to the intense feelings of helplessness that confront almost every patient admitted to a hospital. Awdish’s book suffers only cheap canada goose uk when she slips into physician mode, searching for words to relate the profundity of medicine as a profession and calling. This takes us out of a story so beautifully constructed we can feel the tip of the scalpel and the weight of the large vascular tumor that is buy canada goose jacket cheap the cause of her canada goose clearance yearlong nightmare.

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Can you truly be compassionate when external circumstances create walls that cannot be broken or scaled no matter how hard you try? This seems to be the central question in Waldman’s fantastic book. A Jewish American pediatric oncologist and palliative care specialist who makes aliyah to Israel to uk canada goose outlet work at the Hadassah hospital in West Jerusalem, Waldman exhibits a rare self awareness, avoiding the “Middle East cheap Canada Goose splaining” that often accompanies stories from canada goose coats the region. Waldman believes in the Zionist project as much as he believes that as a doctor his mission is to Canada Goose Jackets heal whomever he comes in contact with regardless of religion or ethnic affiliation. At the same time, his left of center politics put him at odds with a society that, during his seven years in Israel, grows more Balkanized and violent.

Waldman shows great honesty as he explores his own reactions to Palestinian patients and the incongruity of serving as an Israeli Army medic during Operation Cast Lead while simultaneously treating cancer patients from Gaza. He even takes a close look at his canada goose clearance sale own internal identity conflict, feeling too American to be Israeli, but too invested in Zionism Canada Goose Online to fully identify as an American. Yalom

343 pp. Basic Books. $30.

Yalom, the eminent Stanford physician, novelist and pioneer in the field of existential psychiatry, has a wealth of experience that shapes the story he wants to tell. But “Becoming Myself” is not about the external world; it is the memoir of a storied career that fails to contain the richness of the life Canada Goose Parka it chronicles. Memoir is a difficult literary form to pull off when dealing with discrete and poignant moments in a life, even harder when seeking to narrate over 80 years of existence. Yalom writes less as a physician passing along canada goose uk outlet profound clinical insights in his chosen field than as a grandfather meandering through different aspects of his life with unrelenting honesty and more than a little self deprecation such is the luxury of the successful, self aware canada goose uk shop man.

The best memoirists are able to fully canada goose black friday website sale situate themselves within the world, however internal their writing what did it mean, for example, for Canada Goose online Yalom, who grew up in a poor Washington neighborhood, to be a Jewish boy living with black people before the advent of canada goose uk black friday the civil rights movement? While interesting, Yalom’s memoir is somewhat disengaged from this wider context and, as a result, much less impactful than it could have been at a time when we know that we can no longer isolate or insulate ourselves from the absolute upheaval happening around us Canada Goose Outlet.

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