NNLM Reading Club: HIV/AIDS Health
NNLM Reading Club Book Kit
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Discussion Guide for Taking Turns: Stories from HIV/AIDS Care Unit 371
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In 1994, at the height of the AIDS epidemic in the United States, MK Czerwiec took her first nursing job, at Illinois Masonic Medical Center in Chicago, as part of the caregiving staff of HIV/AIDS Care Unit 371. Taking Turns chronicles Czerwiec’s seven years serving as a nurse on the dedicated HIV/AIDS care unit. She combines her memories with the oral histories of patients, family members, and staff. This graphic memoir depicts life and death in the ward, the ways the unit affected and informed those who passed through it, and how many look back on their time there today. Czerwiec’s restrained, inviting drawing style and carefully considered narrative examine individual, institutional, and community responses to the AIDS epidemic—as well as the role that art can play in the grieving process.
JAMA Best of Graphic Medicine 2017
Taking Turns: Stories from HIV/AIDS Care Unit 371 | MK Czerwiec | Penn State University Press | 2017 | 224 pages | ISBN: 78-0271078182
MK Czerwiec is a Senior Fellow of the George Washington School of Nursing Center for Health Policy and Media Engagement (Washington, DC) and the Artist-in-Residence at Northwestern Feinberg School of Medicine (Chicago, IL) where she teaches a course she designed called “Drawing Medicine” to first and second-year medical students. She also co-teaches a cross-curriculum course on Graphic Medicine at the University of Chicago. With a BSN from Rush University in Chicago, she began her clinical nursing experience in HIV/AIDS care and hospice care, and with a BA in English from Loyola University Chicago, she started making comics under the pseudonym Comic Nurse in 2000. She is a co-manager of GraphicMedicine.org and host of the Graphic Medicine podcast.