#TKOP (The Kinds Of Pain, September 16, 2017):

Do you have a pain of 9? Do you malinger? ‘Where’ does it hurt, & when? Do you want to be admitted to a hospital? Do you want attention? Are you suffering from loneliness? Do you need morphine? Is pain subjective, & always multidimensional? Is the brain always a part of any pain experience? Is pain a disease? How can it be assessed? Can there be patients without diseases, and diseases without patients? Can groups experience pain? Is treating the pain different from treating the disease? Do only pain killers relieve pain? How does pain reinforce itself? Can social or economic or political problems be redressed at hospitals? How does torture work? Why do we suffer? Is our body socially constructed? Do you go to the gym? Can pain be addictive? Are inequality and pain really connected? Could changing the nature of work reduce pain in the world? Can self hypnosis work for unrelenting chronic pain? Might a woman’s endometrial pain (say) (sometimes) be called illegitimate, & why? What is the purpose of pain? Can one understand one’s own and others’ pain via art or religion? Can pain be blocked off permanently? &, should one desire a pain free world as a right? SynTalk thinks about these & more questions using concepts from palliative care (Prof. Mary Ann Muckaden, Tata Memorial Centre, Mumbai), sociology (Prof. Harish Naraindas, JNU, New Delhi), & history (Dr. Benjamin R. Siegel, Boston University, Massachusetts).

Listen in…

SynTalk is pleased and privileged to have hosted the following SynTalkrs (in alphabetical order) on its #TKOP show.

Prof. Mary Ann Muckaden (palliative care, oncology) is Professor & Former Head, Department of Palliative Medicine, Tata Memorial Centre, Mumbai. She is also the president, Indian Association of Palliative Care & past Chairperson, International Children’s Palliative Care Network. Her research is focused on integration of palliative care into the trajectory of illness as early as possible for patients with life limiting conditions and their families. After her M.B.B.S from St. John Medical College (Bangalore, 1976), & an M.D. (Radiotherapy) from AIIMS (New Delhi), she went on to complete her M.Sc. in Palliative Medicine from Cardiff University, UK. She also got trained as EPEC Master Facilitator for Paediatrics and India, from North Western University, Chicago, USA. She has championed the cause of palliative care throughout the country and particularly in Maharashtra, leading the way in creating greater awareness for the urgent and critical need for palliative care with the government, medical profession and individuals. She has also developed the charter of education in palliative medicine, as part of which she built the education charter of medical students of MD, palliative medicine & radiation Oncology, developed the fellowship under HBNI (Homi Bhabha National Institute), & also developed the palliative care lectures which are included in curriculum of MD Paediatrics, MD Medicine and MS Surgery for Maharashtra University of Health Sciences. She has also created & helped implement the palliative care policy for Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, Delhi & Government of Maharashtra.. Her research work is published in over 50 publications in national and international indexed journals, & 9 book chapters. She is also a core member of multiple national & international medical associations, such as, IAHPC (International Association of Hospice & Palliative Care), EAPC (European Association of Palliative Care ), & INCTR ( International Network for Cancer Treatment and Research).

Prof. Harish Naraindas (sociology, anthropology) is Professor of sociology at Centre for the Study of Social Systems, School of Social Sciences, Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), New Delhi and adjunct professor at the University of Iowa, USA. He has also taught at the University of Delhi (DU), was joint-appointments professor at the Cluster of Excellence, Faculty of Philosophy, South Asia Institute of the University of Heidelberg (2008-12), and was UGC-DAAD fellow, University of Freiburg (2009 & 2010). Prof. Naraindas completed his Ph.D. in Sociology from Delhi School of Economics (DU) in 1998. His research interests are sociology of science and medicine, with special focus on areas such as the emergence of tropical medicine as a discipline, the history of smallpox, a cross-cultural study of childbirth, medical tourism, Ayurveda, and the German Kur. He is currently working on past-life aetiologies and therapeutic trance in German psychosomatic medicine, a cross-cultural study of perinatal death, personhood and modes of memorilaising perinatal loss, and a comparative study of well-being in India and Switzerland. From 2008-16 he was part the University of Heidelberg’s Cluster of Excellence transcultural research on Asia and Europe. He has also been a visiting Fellow at several places, including the Wellcome Institute/Centre for the History of Medicine in London, the Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, the Maison des science de l’homme, Paris, and La Trobe University, Melbourne. Among his recent publications are a co-edited special issue of Anthropology and Medicine (due in December 2017) called ‘The Fragile Medical: The Slippery Terrain between Medicine, Anthropology and Societies’, and two co-edited books: ‘Healing Holidays: Itinerant Patients, Therapeutic Locales and the Quest for Health’ (London, Routledge 2015),  and ‘Asymmetrical Conversations: Contestations, Circumventions and the Blurring of Therapeutic Boundaries’ (New York, Berghahn, 2014).

Dr. Benjamin R. Siegel (history) is a historian of modern South Asia, with particular interests in the politics and economic life of India, Pakistan, and Bangladesh in global contexts. He teaches at the Department of History, Boston University (BU), USA. He received his B.A. from Yale University and his A.M. and Ph.D. from Harvard University, where his dissertation won the 2014 Sardar Patel Award given by the Center for India and South Asia at UCLA, honoring ‘the best doctoral dissertation on any aspect of modern India’. His areas of interest are citizenship, governance, and statehood, comparative colonial and global history (Africa, South Asia, Southeast Asia), development, technology, and the politics of expertise, history of economic thought, history of South Asia, 1500 – present – food politics, famine, and hunger; modern South Asian politics, economy, and culture. Prior to BU, Dr. Siegel was a researcher and reporter for Time in New Delhi and Hong Kong, a Yale University Fox International Fellow at Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), New Delhi, a visiting fellow with Hong Kong University’s Centre for Medicine and the Humanities, a Junior Fellow of the American Institute of Indian Studies, an affiliate researcher at the Indian Agricultural Research Institute, and a Junior Fellow at the Harvard Academy for International and Area Studies. His first book project, ‘Hungry Nation: Food, Famine, and the Making of Modern India’ (Cambridge University Press, 2018), interrogates the ways in which problems of food and scarcity has structured Indian citizens’ understanding of welfare and citizenship since independence. Dr. Siegel’s current project, ‘Markets of Pain: American Bodies and Indian Drugs in an Age of Distress’ is a transnational history of the American opioid crisis, built upon archival work in India, the United States, Turkey, and Australia. Dr. Siegel’s work has been published in multiple journals & edited volumes, such as, the Caravan, Humanity, & Economic & Political Weekly (EPW).

Note: Any & all errors in the brief profiles above are SynTalk’s own.

#TKOP mentionsKarl Marx, Michel Foucault, & Giorgio Agamben, among others.