As the American Medical Association has long proclaimed, Americans enjoy higher standards of medical care than the rest of mankind. And American medical technology is continually exploring and expanding along the frontiers of science. Yet, as doctors delve deeper into technology, as they apply new techniques, procedures, and ways of administering drugs (as in the case of the morphine given President Reagan during his recent operation), they—and the host of nurses and technicians who assist them— may be in danger of losing the human touch. The patient is treated not as an individual but rather as a case; and the result, Dr. Ian Stevenson contends, is that “while we have been improving the curing side of medicine, we have been neglecting its caring side.” Having spent more than 40 years in the medical profession— he received his M.D.degree from McGill University’s School of Medicine in Montreal in 1943—Dr. Stevenson is intimately acquainted with the world of men and women in white. His contentions about patient abuse in medical care, therefore, can be neither dismissed nor denied; they are matters of public concern. A native of Montreal who is now a naturalized U.S.citizen, Dr. Stevenson is the Carlson Professor of Psychiatry at the University of Virginia and a former chairman of the Department of Psychiatry in the School of Medicine there. He is a graduate of the Washington Psychoanalytic Institute and a former Commonwealth Fund Fellow in Medicine at Cornell University Medical College in the New York Hospital. He was an associate professor of psychology at the Louisiana State University School of Medicine in New Orleans from 1952 to 1957, when he came to Virginia. For the past 25 years, Dr. Stevenson has conducted research in parapsychology, particularly involving possible cases of reincarnation. He is the author of 10 books, including The Diagnostic Interview, The Psychiatric Examination, and the 4-volume Cases of the Reincarnation Type, involving cases, respectively, in India, Sri Lanka, Lebanon and Turkey, Thailand and Burma.
Writing in VQR’s Autumn 1984 issue, Jeffrey Meyers analyzed—and found to be often misleading, often mistaken, and sometimes dead wrong—the 17 personal memoirs written by people who allegedly knew Ernest Hemingway. This autumn, in conjunction with the publication of his own account of Hemingway’s life and work—Hemingway: A Biography, due out from Harper & Row this month—Mr. Meyers describes how he went about researching and re-creating the turbulent career of a great 20th-century American writer. His dogged pursuit of the evasive Ernest took Mr. Meyers from Key West to Ketchum, Boston to Belgravia and involved dozens of personal interviews, several described in his latest VQR essay. A professor of English at the University of Colorado, Mr. Meyers is the author of 20 books, including biographies of Katherine Mansfield and Wyndham Lewis. He has been the recipient of fellowships from the American Council of Learned Societies, the Fulbright program, and the Guggenheim Foundation.
A native of Arizona, Lewis Horne now lives in Saskatoon, Canada “as a landed immigrant.” He is a member of the English faculty at the University of Saskatchewan, where he teaches, among other things, Victorian literature. He has published a collection of poems called The Seventh Day, and his stories have appeared in such journals as Chariton Review, Literary Review, and Ontario Review. One was anthologized in Best American Short Stories, 1974.
Frank John Edwards studied literature and writing at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Warren Wilson College before taking a medical degree at the University of Rochester. He practices in Asheville and recently won the Eyster Prize in short fiction from Louisiana State University.
David Rosenberg lives in Israel and has published versions of the Book of Job with Harper & Row.
A member of the faculty at Michigan State University, Diane Wakoski has published numerous volumes of poetry, among the most recent being Greed. She recently traveled to Yugoslavia as a senior Fulbright Fellow and guest of the Writers Exchange program.
Kent Monroe, Jr. is a 29-year-old poet/playwright incarcerated in the Virginia Department of Corrections. He has poems forthcoming in Joint Endeavor and Stone Country as well as a broadside published by the World Prison Poetry Center in New Haven.
A selection of Louis Jenkins’ poems was recently featured in Poetry East, and other poems appeared in Ironwood and Black Warrior Review.
Louis Simpson is no stranger to readers of this journal, and his work was the subject of an essay review by poet Hank Lazer in our Autumn 1984 issue. His latest book is People Live Here: Selected Poems, 1949—1983.
One of America’s most prolific contemporary poets, Donald Hall is also the editor of the Oxford Book of Children’s Verse in America. An avid sports fan, Mr. Hall recently published a collection of sports essays entitled Fathers Playing Catch with Their Sons. He lives in a New Hampshire farmhouse built by his greatgrandfather.
Paul L. Gaston received his Ph. D. degree in English from the University of Virginia in 1970 and is now professor of English and coordinator of university selfstudy at Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville. He has written a book on W.D.Snodgrass and articles on Walker Percy, Ben Jonson, and Joseph Conrad.
Eleanor Ross Taylor is familiar to the readers of this journal as an exceptionally talented poet, but Mrs. Taylor’s talent is not limited to poetry, as is clearly indicated in her short story, “Early Deaths.”
David Kirby’s essay, “Mental Health in High Office,” is an excerpt from a book in progress called American Contraries, in which he discusses “peculiarly American internal contradictions. . . . the same psyche that produces violence, murder, and racism is also responsible for our cherished ideals of freedom and individualism.” Mr. Kirby’s VQR essay concentrates on “the forward march of feminism.” He teaches English at Florida State University and is the author of The Sun Rises in the Evening: Monism and Quietism in Western Culture.
A native of Richmond and graduate of Hollins College, Elizabeth M. Hunnewell married a Harvard Business School graduate who became an investment banker. After living in Paris from 1967 to 1981, the Hunnewells and their three children returned to the Boston area, where Mrs. Hunnewell began writing short stories, after a long period in which her writing was “confined to grocery lists, excuses for school absences, and letters back home.” “Home from the War” is her first published story.
A resident of Washington for many years, where she was prominent in the Democratic Party, Katie Louchheim moved to New York after her husband’s death and now resides in what she calls “this frantic city.” “After many years of brooding over my experiences in 1945 touring the D.P. camps, I decided that this epoch must be recorded,” she writes. And so it is in the pages of this issue.
As he notes in his review, Ashley Brown was a student of John Crowe Ransom at Kenyon College. He is now a professor of English at the University of South Carolina and editor of several books, the most recent being The Poetry Reviews of Allen Tate, 1924—1944. Mr. Brown is currently writing a book on American and Brazilian writers.
James Deakin covered the White House for 25 years for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. He is the author of Straight Stuff: The Reporters, the White House and the Truth, published in 1984.
Paul Fry is a professor of English at Yale University and the author of two books, The Poet’s Calling in the English Ode and The Reach of Criticism.
Paul Barolsky recently became chairman of the department of art at the University of Virginia. He is a scholar of the Italian Renaissance as well as of 19th-century art criticism.
An associate professor of English at Johns Hopkins University, Lee Patterson is the author of articles on Chaucer, Arthurian literature, and 12th-century French romance. He is completing a book on Chaucerian poetics.
Burling Lowrey lives in Washington, D.C.and teaches writing and literature at nearby Montgomery College. His interest in sports culture, particularly prose style and language usage, began after he “ran the usual gamut of sports activities” as a boy and entered college.
Darden Asbury Pyron is a member of the history faculty at Florida International University in Miami. While he has a broad knowledge of Southern history, his particular field of interest at the present time is the South during the years between World War I and World War II.
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