October 23, 2015American Society for Bioethics and Humanities Presentation

a bioethical issue

Dr. Stripling gave a presentation at the 17th annual ASBH meeting in Houston on “How to understand and to teach Albert Camus’ The Plague as it reflects on the 2014 Ebola outbreak in Dallas, Texas.”

Using a timeline of the 2014 Ebola outbreak, she showed how The Plague, classic twentieth-century fiction, taught us what to anticipate and how to address the spread of infectious disease in an unsuspecting population.

The Plague gives us social, religious, economical, and political views. It casts a light on modern-day outbreaks, showing how crises evolve and resolve. It shows the symbiotic relationship between the media and medicine; creates a sense of the value of the self-sacrificing medical professional; and leaves us with the realization that those who contract disease, are stigmatized, quarantined and isolated, deserve our compassion.

Spring 2015Taught “Bioethics in Literature,” TCU SILVER FROGS

Dr. Stripling taught “Bioethics in Literature” at Texas Christian University to an enthusiastic classroom of 16 adult students in the inaugural Silver Frogs extended education division. They brought their A game to roundtable discussions of some of the most important bioethical issues we face today. These include, should we be wary of technology, which often outpaces laws and regulations; what are the emotional and spiritual aspects to organ transplantation; and what are some of the slippery-slope issues we should consider relating to physician-assisted suicide, now legal in three states. In essence, the main lesson taught in this course is that we all need to observe our world and come to a fuller understanding of these issues so that we can make informed decisions.

Course description: Reading a range of literature, including Shelley's Frankenstein, Camus' The Plague, Feldshuh's Miss Evers' Boys, Kesey's One Flew over the Cuckoo's Nest, Updike’s Rabbit at Rest, and Margaret Edson's Wit, students will come to understand how many of the bioethical and medical issues challenging society today have been anticipated and addressed in literature.

a bioethical issue

The popularity of this course, dealing with bioethics as revealed in literature, bears witness to us that this is a booming field of interest where the expectations are sometimes very high.

Course reference book: Bioethics and Medical Issues in Literature, second updated paperback edition (U Cal MH Press, 2013). This text has become “essential reading” in courses all across the world, such as in the Oxford Berkeley Program, “Medicine: Ethics and Practice.”

February 25, 2014Readers' Theater Presentation at Narrative Bridge Conference, Charleston, MUSC

In Mahala Yates Stripling’s “Follow Your Heart: Medical Readers’ Theater Workshop,” we were mesmerized by the professional and poignant reading of Dr. Richard Selzer’s story about Hannah, the widow of a man whose organs were transplanted into several recipients. Thanks to the following participants who gave us their best thespian voices: Mansi Shah, Muriel Murch, Shelly Wall, Sandra Weems, Sara Baker and Lori-Linell C. Hollins.

Follow Your Heart: Medical Readers' Theater Workshop