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Elective Course in Master’s Program

The elective course is aimed at anyone at the master's level with an interest in literature, health, narratives and creativity.

In recent years, much research has been done into the effect of narratives in connection with patient involvement in the USA and England - and now also in Denmark. The main responsible lecturer in the optional course is a researcher and lecturer in the interdisciplinary field "narrative medicine", and the guest lecturers who are involved have their experience of teaching from SDU's health science courses in narrative medicine. This is the first time that an optional course in narrative medicine is offered at the Department of Cultural Studies at SDU.


The teaching includes a thorough scientific and research-based introduction to language, literature and media studies with special emphasis on central and relevant areas within the Danish language, literature, media and culture.

The teaching includes a thorough, scientific introduction to the interdisciplinary field of "narrative medicine" with a special emphasis on the question of what fiction and even broader aesthetic narratives can contribute to patients' self-understanding and rehabilitation. New, Danish and international research in the field of narrative medicine is presented, and a series of Danish literary texts from H.C. Andersen and Tove Ditlevsen to Caroline Albertine Minor, as well as films, TV series and a graphic novel.


The health science question is: What really happens when the patient is given the opportunity to describe his or her experiences of illness through a written narrative? While the literary-scientific question is: How are disease experiences such as anxiety, grief, shock, psychosis, and cancer represented in the literature? The pervasive question in the course will be how can aesthetic narratives contribute to something as concrete as improved diagnosis, treatment, and rehabilitation of sick people without being instrumentalized or abused?



Last Updated 30.09.2021