June 10, 2020

Ep.8 - Thomas Rütten - Thomas Mann’s Fictional Characters and Their Quest for the Patient Narrative

Ep.8 - Thomas Rütten - Thomas Mann’s Fictional Characters and Their Quest for the Patient Narrative

Explores the interface between medicine and literature in Thomas Mann's work and assesses the latter’s relevance for a medical historiography that takes the individuality of the patient seriously.


In the majority of his novels, short stories, and essays, in his diaries and personal letters, that is throughout his life and work, Thomas Mann (1875-1955) reflects on matters of health and disease, patients and doctors, healing and dying. The radically autobiographical roots of his writing blur the boundaries between fact and fiction, historiography and the art of narration, experience and imagination.

In this talk, Rütten explores the interface between medicine and literature in his work and assess the latter’s relevance for a medical historiography that takes the individuality of the patient seriously.

Speaker: Dr Thomas Rütten (Newcastle University)


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