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Aims and scope

The Journal of Medical Humanities is a peer-reviewed, scholarly journal that publishes innovative research, creative scholarship, poetry, essays, reviews, and short reports in the health humanities. Please see the list of “what we publish” for more information about specific genres for submission and information about their length and format.

We welcome innovative submissions from scholars who seek to define what health humanities means in the 21st century. We understand health humanities to comprise scholarly inquiry employing humanities or arts-based methods and/or content and focusing on the experience of health and illness, embodiment, engagement with medicine or therapeutics, and/or technologies of bodily remedy or enhancement. Attention can be aimed at individual experience, broader public health and associated structural determinants of health and illness, or both. Health humanities scholarship acknowledges the interdisciplinary nature of its readership and, while providing nuanced and sophisticated interpretations, offers readers clear explanations of discipline-specific concepts, terms, and theoretical frameworks. Health humanities scholarship can be disciplinary or interdisciplinary (or even transdisciplinary), but its target audience includes a wide range of readers whose interest is the interplay among culture and medicine, health, illness, and embodiment. Readers expect scholarship that is inclusive and attentive to social justice issues, broadly construed.

We invite scholarship that elaborates critical medical humanities as an approach aligned with critical theory and cultural studies, as well as scholarship that explores what we might call clinical medical humanities, with attention to the enactment of humanistic medicine, health care, and the experience of illness, health, and the body. We are also looking for articles that elucidate what and how knowledge is made and valued in medicine and how that knowledge is expressed and transmitted. Additionally, we are looking for innovative scholarship that challenges conventional academic wisdom, eschews received ideas, and creatively engages the affective domains of scholarly endeavor as we pursue a health humanities for the future.

We accept proposals for themed special issues; please contact the editor, Bernice Hausman (, directly with a proposed topic and schedule for submission.

Please refer to what we publish on the Journal Updates page.