Learn Global Health from Ancient Bones

Here’s an advance peek at a new free online teaching tool of 9 mini-cases now “in press”; this 20-page case set, illustrated stories from the past and lessons for global health today, was conceptualized and developed with the support of the Global Health Education and Learning Incubator at Harvard University:

Visit the Incubator’s amazing free online Resource Repository to view and search for cutting-edge recent research, teaching tools, case studies, and more!

Posted in Educational resource, Web resource

“Health” and “Social Care” belong together

This short article by an experienced health care advocate (and food writer) in the UK should remind all of us — no matter what country we live in — how important (and how much our health systems tend to fail at) integrating what passes for “health” funding (wherever the money comes from) and the nitty gritty details that are “social care.” Thank you Ella Risbridger. For more on health politics and food, see also her new essay, “Flour power: Why every revolution begins with a piece of bread.”

Posted in Op-Ed, Overheard, Web resource

John Chrysostom the Winter Optimist

From his final letter to the deacon Olympia, written from forced exile in the mountains of Armenia, winter 407:

Even with the exceeding severity of the winter, and our stomach’s infirmity, and the raiding of the Isaurians, do not let your cares for us make you overly anxious. For the winter has been simply what it naturally is [and] we have devised many ways to fend off being harmed–having a fire burning continually, having the little room where we’re staying screened off all the way around, being wrapped in many blankets, and staying inside all the time. All of this causes us to suffer, but it’s bearable because of the beneficial results. …

“And neither the inclemency of the weather, nor the desolation of the region, nor the scarcity of goods, nor the dearth of attendants, nor the unskillfulness of the doctors, nor the absence of baths, nor being confined all day long to one room as in a prison, nor being continually unable to move even when I have need to do so, nor constantly abiding in the smoke and near the fire, nor the fear of robbers nor their ceaseless raids, nor any other similar thing has prevailed over us.”

-John Chrysostom, Letter 17, from Saint John Chrysostom: Letters to Saint Olympia, trans. David C. Ford, Popular Patristic Series 56; Yonkers, NY: St. Vladimir’s Seminary Press, 2016, pp. 159, 167.

Posted in Booknote, Overheard

Sarah Phelps on Hunger and Story

“Are you hungry to tell a story?….You’ve got to love your audience, you’ve got to love your world, you’ve got to love your characters, you’ve got to absolutely live and breathe them. And even at 5 in the morning, where you’ve been up for 2 nights in a trot trying to get a script right, when you’re writing, if you giggle, or if you look up from what you’re doing and your face is a wash of tears, well done; you’ve got it; that’s how it is. Live it….You’ve got to absolutely love the people you’re telling the story to, and want to take them so that they will trust you–and then you can take them anywhere.”

-Sarah Phelps, Drama Quarterly, Dec. 21, 2016

Posted in Overheard

Garden Lines for Advent


Light is that geode, planted like a seed, his body a seed buried in stone. And he is the word…

from an Advent poem by Sarah Crowley Chestnut.

(click on the image to read more of Sarah’s poems)

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Religion – and International Humanitarian Law?

Read the article

Posted in Educational resource, Web resource

Learning from a Stampede: New Case Study

New free online case-based resource at the Global Health Education and Learning Incubator at Harvard University:

TEACHING PACK: “Accidents and Injuries: Lessons from a Stampede”
This collection of resources explores the health risks and responses to unintentional accidents and injuries through discussion of the stampede that occurred during the 2013 Kumbh Mela religious pilgrimage in India. In addition to the case, written by Satchit Balsari, MD, MPH, and Susan Holman, MS, PhD, the pack features an instructor’s note, discussion guide, role-play exercise, annotated bibliography, and glossary of terms.

Instructor’s Note
Case: “Stampede at the Kumbh Mela: Preventable Accident?”
Case Discussion Guide
Role-Play Exercise
Annotated Bibliography
Glossary of Terms

Posted in Educational resource, Web resource