Dr. Jerald Winakur


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August 2017, 96 pp
Paper, $15.95
ISBN 978-1-60635-334-9
Human Voices Wake Us
Literature & Medicine, Medicine, Poetry
Jerald Winakur
Foreword by Alan Shapiro

One doctor’s poetic journey of survival.

Patients and physicians are adrift in this era of rapidly changing medical paradigms. Perhaps it has always been so, though it seems that lately the dissatisfaction on both sides has intensified.  Doctors today are struggling: debt, divorce, substance abuse, burnout, suicide. They succeed or fail on professional treadmills; patient encounters measured out with coffee spoons. The doctor-patient relationship is crumbling. Bureaucratic and corporate masters make their never-ending arguments of insidious intent. The overwhelming questions: Now where to turn? How do physicians—and their patients—avoid being crushed by the demands of science, of perfection, of expectations? How do we recover the awe we once felt in this world in which we expend our life force every day? How can we find joy once more?

Human Voices Wake Us is a plea, a prayer, a path for caregivers and patients, for all of us who struggle in difficult circumstances for understanding, enlightenment, and healing. This book is a treatise on the importance of self-reflection, attentiveness to our own inner voice and needs, as well as to those who are struggling with illness, age, infirmity, and loss. It is a call to nurture our idealism: that solid foundation grounding empathic responsiveness and our own humanity.

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