Biographies and Memoirs
The Body Broken: A Memoir , Memoir by Lynne Greenberg
Lynne Greenberg recounts her struggles with debilitating chronic pain. After miraculously surviving a devastating car crash at age 19 that nearly took her life, Greenberg is blind sighted years later when the pain from initial injuries suddenly returns with a vengeance. Greenberg intimately details her life, loves, and lessons learned from a long time suffering with chronic neck and back pain. Lynne Greenberg is currently an associate professor of English at Hunter College and lives in New York City with her family.
The Cats of Mirikitani , DVD Documentary by Linda Hattendorf
Japanese-American artist Jimmy Tsutomu Mirikitani survived the Japanese internment camps of WWII, the bombing of Hiroshima and the loss of his family only to end up homeless and living in New York City’s Washington Square Park at the age of 80. He was separated from his family and watched several other friends and relatives die from sickness in the camps at Tule Lake. Mirikitani’s only source of comfort and healing were his paintings that covered material such as the bombing of Hiroshima, the 9/11 attack on the World Trade Center, his life in the camp and classic art forms he studied while an art student in Japan. Documentary filmmaker Linda Hattendorf records how Mirikitani’s life changes after the artist moves in with in September of 2001. The Cats of Mirikitani won Audience Awards at the International Film Festivals of Paris, Washington D.C., Tribeca and won Best Picture at the Japanese Eyes Tokyo International Film Festival. Both Linda Hattendorf and Jimmy Mirikitani still live in NYC .
Seeking Peace: Chronicles of the Worst Buddhist in the World ,Memoir by Mary Pipher
Pipher shares her struggle to find peace amidst personal tragedy, turmoil and chaos. Pipher does not claim to be an expert in the art of Zen, but she humorously recounts her journey from suffering feelings of isolation and pain to finally reach a place of inner tranquility. Pipher is a psychotherapist and New York Times bestselling author.
A Stroke of Genius: Illness and Self-Discovery, Memoir by Paul West
Celebrated writer Paul West paints artful prose to share his memoir with wry humor and imagination about living with chronic illness from a stroke. After being diagnosed with heart disease, diabetes and debilitating migraines, West sought out the meaning of life’s many questions to distract himself from how drastically his life had changed. West covers medicines, human nature, the resilience of the human spirit and the therapy of the arts during his journey. West is the author of fifteen other novels and resides in upstate New York.
The Sound of a Wild Snail Eating, Book and E-Book by Elisabeth Tova Bailey
A nature based memoir by writer Elisabeth Tova Bailey penned while bedridden with illness. Bailey shares how she coped with her medical conditions by dissecting and writing about the world of a small wild snail from the nearby woods. Bailey parallels her life and that of the wild snail through thought provoking prose and the wonder of a traditional naturist. Bailey quotes Edward O. Wilson from Bibliophilia, 1984 by sharing that “Humanity is exalted not because we are so far above other living creatures, but because knowing them well elevates the very concept of life.” Listen to the NPR Interview and read an excerpt here.
Chronic Pain and Treatments (Non-Fiction)
Above & Beyond:365 Meditations for Transcending Chronic Pain and Illness, Novel by J.S. Dorian Dorian has created a day by day program for conquering chronic pain through the art of meditation. Dorian was inspired to write this book after suffering chronic pain himself due to surviving the removal of a malignant melanoma and coronary artery bypass. Dorian has written several other day by day companion books on holistic healing, mastering the art of tranquility, and his books have been translated into languages all over the world.
The Art Therapy Sourcebook, Novel by Cathy A. Malchiodi
Art Therapy has been making grand movements in the world of healing. From physical therapy rehabilitation to using the creative process as a coping mechanism for chronic illness, art therapy is increasing in popularity. The positive effects of these treatments have been studied more and more frequently as of late and this compilation is the leading sourcebook on the subject. Cathy A. Malchiodi has a Ph.D in psychology and is also a licensed mental health professional. She currently practices, teaches and resides in Louisville, Kentucky.
Chronic Pain and the Family: A New Guide, Novel by Julie K. Silver, M.D.
Silver takes a look at the effects chronic pain can have on the family unit as a whole. Starting with the definition of chronic pain, Silver outlines the common causes for chronic pain as well as the scale by which pain is measured. The many issues that sufferers of chronic pain face despite the pain itself involve the effect it can have on family relationships, intimacy, career and work life, bearing and raising children, depression and medication dependence. However, there is a light at the end of the tunnel and Silver details several different treatment options that involve both responsible use of medicines, traditional therapies and complementary and alternative medicines. Julie K. Silver, M.D., is Medical Director of a Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital Outpatient Center in Massachusetts as well as an Assistant Professor of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at Harvard Medical School.
Mindfulness Meditation for Pain Relief: Guided Practices for Reclaiming Your Body and Your Life CD by Jon Kabat-Zinn
Over the past 30 years Jon Kabat-Zinn has been researching and practicing the art of meditation. Mindfulness Meditation for Pain Relief guides listeners through peaceful meditation processes that focus on relieving pain, discomfort and healing of the body. Kabat-Zinn is also mindful in his writing of the stress physical pain can have on mental health and well-being for a thorough examination of healing through meditation.
The Language of Pain: Finding Words, Compassion, and Relief, Novel by David Biro
Biro sheds light on the silent worlds of those who suffer from chronic pain and cope through writing and creating art. Biro discusses such great creators as Frida Kahlo and James Joyce and offers art therapy as a way to combat serious chronic pain and suffering. Biro is a practicing physician in New York City with an MD from Columbia University and has a Ph.D in Literature from Oxford University.
The Mind's Own Physician : A Scientific Dialogue with the Dalai Lama on the Healing Power of Meditation , Novel by Jon Kabat-Zinn and Richard J. Davidson
Have your own audience with the Dalai Lama through this thoughtful book on the healing power of meditation. Written in conjunction with master meditator Jon Kabat- Zinn, this book explores how to fully commit to the mind and body connection in terms of healing oneself. Psychology, psychotherapy, Buddhism and spiritual healing lessons fill this text to put you on the road to mental and physical healing and wellness.
The Pain Chronicles: Cures, Myths, Mysteries, Prayers, Diaries, Brain Scans, Healing and the Science of Suffering, Novel and CD by Melanie Thernstrom
Thernstrom chronicles the beginning conceptions of pain from the earliest records until the present day. A long time sufferer of chronic pain herself, Thernstrom’s interviews with those affected lend a sympathetic slant to the exploration of such an intimate and solitary condition. Thernstrom includes the power of private journaling to aid in the healing process of pain. Melanie Thernstrom is a novelist and contributing writer for the NY Times Magazine.
Pain: The Science of Suffering , Novel by Patrick Wall
Wall explores the thesis that pain can affect all aspects of life and involves our state of mind, social mores, beliefs, experiences and expectations. Wall further examines the different ways individuals deal with pain to create specific expressions. Wall explores such phenomenon as the phantom limb and the effects of adrenaline on the brain’s ability to transmit the signals of pain to the rest of the body. Patrick Wall is professor of physiology at St. Thomas’s Hospital Medical School in London and a fellow of the Royal Honor Society.
Why We Hurt: The Natural History of Pain, Novel by Frank Vertosick
Neurosurgeon Frank T. Vertosick, Jr., M.D., has compiled his interviews with patients that suffered excruciating amounts of pain. Vertosick, in turn, takes these stories and weaves them in with the explanations of how pain and peoples understanding of pain has evolved over time. All kinds of pain are examined including chronic pain, back pain, angina and cancer to name a few. Vertosick also impresses the importance of being an empathetic and compassionate physician. Frank Vertosick lives in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and is the former president of the Pennsylvania Neurological Society.
Understanding Pain from TIME Magazine
A special double issue on the influence of pain and health published on March 7, 2011. This features issue includes articles entitled “Healing the Hurt”, “The End of Ouch?”, “Living with Pain”, and “Beyond Drugs”. We hold these issues in our Periodicals section and you can also access the articles free online by clicking on THIS link.
Truth and Consequences , Novel by Alison Lurie
Lurie is a novel about two couples living with the stress of chronic pain. When first introduced, there does not seem to be a discernible connection, but over time the couples intermingle and share their lives. With some deception and some comedy, Lurie’s novel revolves around how the effect of chronic pain on relationships can change lives and loves until they are barely recognizable. Determination and bravery, however, are also at the forefront of this story for a well-rounded look into both the giving and receiving of care. Alison Lurie has written several fiction novels and teaches folklore, literature and writing at Cornell University in Ithaca, NY.
Surrealism and Pavel Tchelitchew
Surrealist Art: The Lindy and Edwin Bergman Collection at the Art Institute of Chicago
The Bergmans of Chicago acquired a staggering number of surrealist pieces throughout their lives. In this oversized art book, their surrealist collection is featured as a result of an exhibit through the Art Institute of Chicago. One of many surrealist painters showcased in this book was the inspiration and colleague of our featured gallery artist Phil Burns. His is Russian born artist Pavel Tchelitchew. Tchelitchew lived from 1898 to 1957. During that time, he created several pieces and had a penchant for focusing on human anatomy. The Art Institute of Chicago is located at 111 South Street Chicago, IL and continues to run by donations public and private, as well as generous grants and endowments from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.
Surreal Lives: The Surrealists 1917-1945, Novel by Ruth Brandon
Ruth Brandon writes about influential surrealist artists making way during WWI and ending with WWII. Brandon talks about the effect these revolutionary artists had on the future of art in the world and examines great artists including Andre Breton, Marcel Duchamp, Salvador Dali, Man Ray, Max Ernst and Dadaist Tristan Tzara. This time in the world’s history was a time steeped in politics, war and a changing landscape for perception versus reality. This was especially prominent in the art scene. Ruth Brandon is a social historian who has written several novels on famous persons throughout history such as Harry Houdini and Sarah Bernhardt. Brandon lives in Olney, Buckinghamshire, England.
Surrealism, edited by Mary Ann Caws
Mary Ann Caws edited this homage to surrealism that covers several famous artists in a beautifully put together collection of images and text. Full color glossy pages make the art come to life and lead the viewer through the history of the surrealist movement and the lives of the artists themselves in the first part of the text. Paintings, sculptures, drawings and photographs are included in the works. The second part of the book shows documents and correspondence from the time period. The writings are put into context with what was happening in the world at the time as well as the personal letters many of the artists wrote to each other. Mary Ann Caws is a writer and Distinguished Professor of Comparative Literature, English and French at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York.
One Drawing a Day: A Six Week Course on Exploring Creativity with Illustration and Mixed Media, a Novel by Veronica Lawlor
Whether you have experience with art or you are just a beginner, this book will instruct you on letting your creative juices flow. Like our featured artist Phil Burns, you can create one drawing a day and feel your way to creating expressions of thought and feeling from within. Veronica Lawlor is a graduate of Parsons School of Design and the New School. She is also the president of Studio 1482 and a correspondent for the Urban Sketchers international blog.