by Andrew Bomback
Pub Date 20 Sep 2018
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Object Lessons is a series of short, beautifully designed books about the hidden lives of ordinary things.
A 3-year-old asks her physician father about his job, and his inability to provide a succinct and accurate answer inspires a critical look at the profession of modern medicine.
In sorting through how patients, insurance companies, advertising agencies, filmmakers, and comedians misconstrue a doctor's role, Andrew Bomback, M.D., realizes that even doctors struggle to define their profession. As the author attempts to unravel how much of doctoring is role-playing, artifice, and bluffing, he examines the career of his father, a legendary pediatrician on the verge of retirement, and the health of his infant son, who is suffering from a vague assortment of gastrointestinal symptoms.
At turns serious, comedic, analytical, and confessional, Doctor offers an unflinching look at what it means to be a physician today.
Object Lessons is published in partnership with an essay series in The Atlantic.
“With intelligence and humor, Andrew Bomback shows how human beings cope with issues of power and vulnerability. Doctor is an insightful read for anyone who's been on either end of the stethoscope.” – Amy Fusselman, author of Idiophone (2018) and The Pharmacist's Mate (2001)
“A disarming, candid, precise meditation on the inescapable role that 'complication' or 'luck'-otherwise known as 'fate'-plays in the life of any doctor or patient or, indeed, any human.” – David Shields, author of The Thing About Life Is That One Day You'll Be Dead (2008)