Book announcement: My Imaginary Illness

My book, “My Imaginary Illness: A Journey of Uncertainty and Prejudice
in Medical Diagnosis
“, has been released by Cornell University Press (22
October 2010).  It is part of their series “How Patients Think.”
The Press’ web site for the book is as follows:

A quick description:
At age twenty-one, Chloë Atkins began suffering from a mysterious
illness, the symptoms of which rapidly worsened. Paralyzed for months at
a time, she frequently required intubation and life support. She
eventually became quadriplegic, dependent both on a wheelchair and on
health professionals who refused to believe there was anything
physically wrong with her. When test after test returned inconclusive
results, Atkins’s doctors pronounced her symptoms psychosomatic. Atkins
was told not only that she was going to die but also that this was her
own fault; they concluded she was so emotionally deranged that she was
willing her own death.

My Imaginary Illness is the compelling story of Atkins’s decades-long
battle with a disease deemed imaginary, her frustration with a
succession of doctors and diagnoses, her immersion in the world of
psychotherapy, and her excruciating physical and emotional journey back
to wellness. As both a political theorist and patient, Atkins provides a
narrative critique of contemporary medicine and its problematic handling
of uncertainty and of symptoms that are not easily diagnosed or known.
She convincingly illustrates that medicine’s belief in evidence-based
practice does not mean that individual doctors are capable of
objectivity, nor that the presence of biomedical ethics invokes ethical
practices in hospitals and clinics. A foreword by Bonnie Blair O’Connor,
who teaches medical students how to listen to patients, and a clinical
commentary by Dr. Brian David Hodges, a professor of psychiatry, enrich
the book’s narrative with practical guidance for medical practitioners
and patients alike.

It is now available on

Many thanks,

Chloe G K Atkins

Chloë G. K. Atkins
Associate Professor
Department of Communication and Culture
Law and Society Program
Faculty of Arts
University of Calgary
2500 University Drive NW
Calgary, Alberta

Published in: on November 11, 2010 at 8:24 am  Comments (1)  

The URI to TrackBack this entry is:

RSS feed for comments on this post.

One CommentLeave a comment

  1. Yoo hoo – the links don’t work! They go to Connecticut State Microsoft Exchange …

    The book looks amazing. Thanks for posting this announcement!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: