Implications of the God Complex

After undergoing years of expensive training at selective medical schools, it is almost expected that a doctor would finish with not only a degree, but a feeling of superiority. Those outside of the medical profession often regard these doctors as highly knowledgeable as well. Our discussion from class about doctors’ God complex made me question the implications of holding physicians on such a high pedestal. In reading Avery’s post, “The ‘God Complex’ and Doctors”, I began to think of the negative effects that occur from regarding doctors as an omniscient being. Continue reading “Implications of the God Complex”

The “God Complex” and Doctors

Today in class, we discussed Blake in Clay’s Ark and his tendency to act as though he has the “God Complex”. The “God Complex” is when one tends to believe that they are above all else due to their place in society, their overfed ego, or their need to solely do what pleases them in life. Many quickly made the relation that Blake feels this way because he is a doctor. From many of my personal experiences, doctors tend to believe that they are above many others because they are educated and perform noble tasks daily. Although most doctors are right in feeling this way, I find that it is not applicable to every Doctor. I have had multiple bad experiences with Doctors over the course of my lifetime; my friend has one that takes the cake as being the worst story I’ve been told about an error made during a medical procedure Continue reading “The “God Complex” and Doctors”

Personal Desires vs. Consent

In today’s class discussion, ‌the topic of consent was almost completely overlooked while discussing “Present 8” in Clay’s Ark by Octavia Butler. I understand that the topic of consent may be difficult to talk about in relation to everyday life and situations where it is not given, however, in Clay’s Ark, I believe it is important to discuss especially as more people become exposed to the extraterrestrial organism. I believe that almost every character in the novel so far has failed to gain consent from another character. Continue reading “Personal Desires vs. Consent”

Jumping from Past to Present

As mentioned in class yesterday, Clay’s Ark by Octavia Butler switches between chapters of the past and the present. After reading parts two and three, I believe that the reason for the shift in time is for the reader to gain information on Eli, as the Maslin family gains information about the extraterrestrial organism. Unlike Toni Morrison’s Home, I am not confused by the changes in time by Clay’s Ark, and enjoy anticipating what the next chapter will reveal. Continue reading “Jumping from Past to Present”

Respecting Bodies

Throughout this semester we have continually been exposed to texts that reveal the horrors African Americans have been subject to in the name of medical research and education, with Fortunes Bones being a unique example of a combination of history and an author’s fictional interpretation of it. Marilyn Nelson uses poems and blurbs to educate readers on the story of Fortune, a slave whose skeleton would be exploited for decades after his death. This stylistic approach provides us a multitude of viewpoints on issues related to the exploitation of Fortune’s bones and allows the reader to contemplate many ethical questions regarding the use of black bodies in medicine on a personal level. Although we have read other texts such as Home and Medical Apartheid that depict similar abuses, no text has quite impacted me as much as Fortune’s Bones has to this point. This is mainly due to the fact that as the son of a dentist who is interested in medicine, I have been exposed to real-life examples of human anatomy from a young age, ranging from living patients to objects like models and even a real skull my father still possesses from dental school. I was taught to respect whatever I learned from regardless if what I was using was an object or observing a patient. I knew that this exposure was unique, but never fathomed that the respect and ethical practices used when treating people/ handling objects would vary, especially when race became a factor. Learning about how African Americans have been so disproportionately abused in the name of medicine was so drastically opposite from the level of respect I was raised to have. This was exemplified in all of the texts we have read but the one text that really hit home the most for me was that of Fortune’s and how dissimilar the Porters treated one’s remains compared to my upbringing.

Continue reading “Respecting Bodies”

Beware the Epistemophilia

Epistemophilia: An excessive love for knowledge.

Water is great! In fact, 55%-60% Of the human body and 71% of the earth is composed of water. Like water anything in moderation, even things that hold a necessity to live is beneficial. However, to look on the other side of the spectrum, an abundance of water, proves have disastrous effects both on the body and ecosystems all over the earth. This same can be applied to other resources like sunshine, rain, wind etc., but also to the human mind, to emotions we experience and actions we partake in. Epistemophilia is when a love for knowledge is approached in an excessive manner and possesses the possibility of causing more damage than good. Interpretation of Octavia Butler’s work then becomes a minefield of epistemophilic traps. Continue reading “Beware the Epistemophilia”

Freud’s Ego and Id in Dawn

Freud states that there is an ego and an id in each person. The ego is what a person believes they are, what decisions they make, and basically our sense of autonomy. The id is our subconscious desires, desires, the things we do without our conscious knowledge. While reading the first parts of Dawn by Butler I came up with kind of a crazy theory. What if Butler has placed the character of Lilith as the ego, and the race of the Extra-terrestrials as the id. For example, Lilith is pretty sure and set in who she is, she believes she makes conscious decisions, and wants to be in control. She isn’t in control though, the Extra-terrestrials are. They make sure she gets full nutrient value (although by the family chapters she’s allowed to choose what to eat), they make decisions about her life (such as changing her chemical compound to open doors), and w Continue reading “Freud’s Ego and Id in Dawn”

Self Birth: Disorganisation

Sometimes in the recesses of our soul we wish to feel new again. Sometimes, in the dark matter of our minds, we wonder what we could be if we were someone else. In the subcutaneous layer of our skin, the pulsing vibrations of our excitement at the possibilities energises our lifeblood giving us a rush of some sorts. We could be day dreaming or we could be in the gestation period of our self-birth.

The origin of life is a controversial topic in the science world with multiple theories laced with loopholes. Many of which are quite difficult to answer presently. However, researchers over the years have proposed and modified multiple types of theories to explain how the first life came about. Many of these theories can not specifically explain how life started without help from an external influence. However, chemical evolution is a leading theory with the Oparin-Haldin  hypothesis suggesting that life arose gradually from inorganic molecules, with “building blocks” like amino acids forming first and then combining to make complex polymers. While, other scientists support the RNA World Hypothesis which suggests that the first life was self-replicating RNA. Others favour the Metabolism- First hypothesis placing metabolic networks before DNA or RNA. How can the wonder of birth and how living things came about not cause such a frenzy? Continue reading “Self Birth: Disorganisation”


This past summer, Dr. Munch and several students had the opportunity to go on a study abroad trip to Ghana to take Biology 344. Along with this being a class, it was an experience for these students. They were able to help search for the sources of several diseases that have been affecting the people’s health drastically. The three main objectives to going on this trip were to improve Healthcare, economic wealth-fare, and the educational infrastructure.

During Wednesday’s class, we discussed the difficulties that millions of Ghanaians deal with on a daily basis and the perspectives that people have regarding Medical Voluntourism. Dr. Munch and Professor Kennison came in to serve as a source for our curiosity and interest in these topics. Continue reading “Solutions”

Justifying the Times

For the past few weeks, I’ve been contemplating if I should write a blog post about consent. I didn’t want to come across as disrespectful. As a forewarning, I don’t want to seem insensitive to anyone who has experienced abuse by discussing controversial current events and making my own interpretations/connections to the past. In no way am I trying intentionally to single anyone out, but I would like to explain the “both/and” connection I made about how people use the time period to justify their actions and excuse their immoral behavior.

Before I even make my “both/and” connection, I’d like for you to guess which statement came from a recently exposed situation and which statement came from a past event.

  1. “Things were simple then. Informed consent was unheard of. No one asked me what I was doing. It was a wonderful time.”
  2. “I came of age in the 60’s and 70’s, when all the rules about behavior and workplaces were different. That was the culture then.”

Continue reading “Justifying the Times”