The Georgetown Humanities Initiative published a news story introducing the Medical Humanities Initiative, with a particular focus on Dr. Lakshmi Krishnan‘s experience and vision as leader of the initiative. The Georgetown Humanities Initiative points out that Dr. Krishnan is a first-generation immigrant who grew up in a variety of places, including India, the UK, and the US. Dr. Krishnan’s training includes degrees in English and German at Wake Forest University, a Masters and DPhil (PhD) in English, specializing in 19th century literature and history at the University of Oxford as a Rhodes Scholar, an MD at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, followed by internal medicine residency at Duke, and a postdoctoral fellowship in General Internal Medicine and History of Medicine at Johns Hopkins.
According to the piece, “Dr. Krishnan’s research focuses on health equity and the history of health disparities, intellectual history of medicine, 19th century and early 20th century literature and medicine, and cultural responses to illness. Her book project, The Doctor and the Detective: A Cultural History of Diagnosis (forthcoming, Johns Hopkins University Press), argues that the medical practice of diagnosis cannot be understood without examining its shared intellectual lineage with the literary genre of detective fiction. This work has clinical relevance in responding to emerging disease or medical mystery on a global scale, the diagnostic process in the face of new technologies, and the immediate problem of diagnostic error and bias in clinical practice”.
Under her leadership, “the Georgetown Medical Humanities Initiative aims to contribute to scholarship and activism in the growing fields of medical humanities and social medicine, develop community and cultivate meaningful partnerships across Georgetown and Washington, DC, and engage faculty and students across the University and at partner institutions via mentorship, faculty development, and research networks”.