Medicine, Literature, and Culture Minor

Department of English and Comparative Literature

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Greenlaw Hall, CB# 3520

(919) 962-5481

Jane Thrailkill, Associate Professor

Mary Floyd-Wilson, Chair

Hilary Lithgow, ECL Undergraduate Advisor

Jennifer Larson, Director of Undergraduate Studies

The interdisciplinary honors minor in medicine, literature, and culture was developed in collaboration with Honors Carolina and the Department of Social Medicine in the UNC School of Medicine. It encourages students to explore the cultural and historical dimensions of medical practice by viewing the practice of medicine not simply as an application of chemical and biological analyses of and interventions in the functioning of the human body but also as a cultural practice embedded in changing ideas of disease, health, doctors, patients, medical institutions, and ethics. The minor is available to students accepted into Honors Carolina and to any undergraduate student who has achieved and maintains a grade point average of 3.00 or better.

Department Programs



Graduate Programs


In addition to the program requirements listed below, students must:

  • take at least nine hours of their minor "core" requirements at UNC–Chapel Hill
  • earn a minimum of 12 hours of C or better in the minor (some minors require more)

For more information, please consult the degree requirements section of the catalog.

Core Requirements
Five courses representing at least three different subject codes:15
Medicine, Literature, and Culture
Four additional courses in at least two additional subject codes
Total Hours15

Options for additional courses include, but are not limited to, the following courses:

AAAD 300Cultures of Health and Healing in Africa3
AAAD 387HIV/AIDS in Africa and the Diaspora3
ANTH 147Comparative Healing Systems3
ANTH 270Living Medicine3
ANTH 319Global Health3
ANTH 444Medicine, Politics, and Justice3
ANTH 474The Anthropology of Disability3
ANTH 272/ENGL 264Healing in Ethnography and Literature3
ANTH/FOLK 470Medicine and Anthropology3
ANTH/FOLK 473Anthropology of the Body and the Subject3
ANTH 442/WGST 440Health and Gender after Socialism3
ANTH/WGST 443Cultures and Politics of Reproduction3
CMPL 383Literature and Medicine H3
ENGL 266Science and Literature H3
ENGL 269Introduction to Disability Studies3
ENGL 370Race, Health, and Narrative H3
ENGL 610Practicum in Health Humanities3
ENGL 611Narrative, Literature, and Medicine: Advanced Interdisciplinary Seminar3
GEOG 222Health and Medical Geography3
HIST 329An Introduction to the History of Medicine H3
HNRS 650Topics in Medicine and the Humanities1-6
MEJO 560/HBEH 660/HPM 550Environmental and Science Journalism H3
PLCY 361Health Policy and Politics3
PLCY/HPM 565Global Health Policy3
PLCY 570/HPM 571Health and Human Rights3
RELI 665/WGST 664Body and Suffering in Christian Mysticism3
SOCI 422Sociology of Mental Health and Illness3
SOCI 431Aging3
SOCI 469Health and Society3

Honors version available. An honors course fulfills the same requirements as the nonhonors version of that course. Enrollment and GPA restrictions may apply.

Additional courses can be applied to the requirements for this minor with the approval of the advisor for the minor.

At least three courses used to fulfill requirements for the minor must be counted exclusively in the minor and cannot be double-counted with a major or second minor. A minimum of 12 hours of C (not C-) or better is required in the minor. All courses must be taken for a standard letter grade, with the exception of one course (three to four credit hours) of By-Examination (BE) credit.

See the program page here for special opportunities.