By Mike Marquesee
Author and political activist Mike Marqusee was once clinically determined with a number of myeloma, one of those blood melanoma, in the summertime of 2007. before everything, disinclined to proportion his distress with others, he used to be reluctant to write down approximately his sickness. yet he then got here to achieve that doing so supplied a worthy continuity along with his lifestyles as a author prior to contracting the illness, and a fashion of attaining out to a much broader international that the sickness made bodily much less available. Writing allowed him to handle what he observed as quite a few insidious platitudes that encompass melanoma, usually attached to the individualistic concept that the patient needs to be courageous in fighting the sickness, with the inevitable corollary that those that succumb have, in a few degree, introduced it on themselves.
And so Marqusee starts off to put in writing approximately his sickness. not only his personal signs and emotions, however the responses of acquaintances to the inside track that he's sick and how those mirror broader social attitudes in the direction of the ailing. He describes the political struggles taking place in St Bartholomew’s, the London health facility that cares for him, and the hindrance in Britain’s nationwide wellbeing and fitness provider (NHS) extra regularly, at a time of harrowing cutbacks. substantial Pharma, whose medications preserve Marqusee alive yet are bought to the NHS at costs reflecting the facility and greed of a ruthless extortionist, is the topic for quite astringent scrutiny.
The observations approximately melanoma in those pages are by no means trite or sentimental. they're acute, relocating, impassioned and political. they usually exhibit very important, shared truths, either own and social, approximately an sickness that would impact one in 3 humans during their lives.
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Extra resources for The Price of Experience: Writings on Living with Cancer
The government is also time-limiting disability benefits and excluding from benefits people with assets, savings, or partners who work. At the same time, higher unemployment totals will make it harder for anyone with a long-term illness to compete in the job market. All around, it’s a policy package that spells personal disaster for a large number of cancer patients. S. ” The numerous cancer advocacy groups perform minor miracles in raising awareness and funds. But the government’s plans present a challenge to their 50 MIK E M A RQUSEE customary approach.
Sitting with my IV drip, I like to think about all the human labour and ingenuity that come together THE PRICE OF EXPERIENCE 61 in this medical moment. I could dedicate the rest of my life to this exercise, and still not complete the inventory. The first circle of dependence is immediate and sometimes intimate: partners, friends, doctors, nurses, cleaners, porters. Beyond them is a vast network of people I never see: pathologists, pharmacists, IT engineers, appointments managers. Everyone who has anything to do with maintaining the supply of medications or the functioning of equipment or getting me to and from hospital.
Alongside that, and necessary to it, are the long histories of the hospital, of the discipline of nursing, of the myriad social developments which made it possible to convert raw science into practical care.