Literature Annotations

Mates, Susan Onthank
The Good Doctor

Genre Collection (Short Stories) (123 pp.)
KeywordsAcculturation, Asian Experience, Death and Dying, Empathy, Family Relationships, Human Worth, Love, Medical Education, Ordinary Life, Physician Experience, Professionalism, Society, Urban Violence, Women in Medicine

Twelve contemporary stories set in Rhode Island and New York City. Major themes include the pain of cultural dislocation and cross-cultural experience ("Theng," "Shambalileh," "My German Problem"); human frailty and self-deception ("Sleep," "Juilliard"); and the personal and moral dimensions of medical practice. See the separate annotations for Laundry, The Good Doctor and Ambulance--three stories which are particularly relevant to Literature and Medicine.

CommentaryThis collection won the John Simmons Short Fiction Award of the University of Iowa Press in 1994. The author is a practicing physician in Rhode Island and a former concert violinist. While these stories are generally brief and incisive, they explore complex issues of character and motivation.
PublisherUniv. of Iowa Press
Place PublishedIowa City, Iowa
Annotated by Coulehan, Jack
Date of Entry 05/02/96
Last Revised 01/31/97