May 6, 2021
Reference Desk: 781-741-1405 x1404
Evening With the Author: Suzanne Koven in conversation with Gish Jen!
Thursday, May 6, 2021
We are thrilled to welcome Dr. Suzanne Koven in conversation with Gish Jen, who will discuss Letter to a Young Female Physician.In 2016, Koven watched interns write letters to their future selves, disclosing their hopes and fears about their burgeoning careers. Koven recalled her own internship, and turned her thoughts into an essay in the N.E. Journal of Medicine. The response to that essay moved her to expand it into a book, giving readers a deeply felt reflection on her time in medicine, from her childhood in postwar Brooklyn, through the twilight of her career during the Covid-19 pandemic. Koven's empathetic story of the highs and lows of a medical career also speaks candidly to the issues that have consistently plagued women in medicine.
Registration for this program has closed. If you had previously registered, you have been emailed the Zoom information.
As Koven explains, female physicians are underpaid on average, underrepresented in leadership positions, and commonly subjected to sexual harassment. Yet beyond those outward challenges, Koven notes that many physicians, regardless of gender, struggle inwardly with imposter syndrome. A poignant and funny exploration of authenticity in work and life, Letter to a Young Female Physician
is an indelible account, by turns humorous and profound, from a doctor, mother, wife, daughter, teacher, and writer who sheds light on our desire to find meaning, and on a way to be our own imperfect selves in the world.
Suzanne Koven is a primary care physician and the inaugural writer-in-residence at Massachusetts General Hospital. She is also a member of the faculty at Harvard Medical School. Her writing has appeared in the New England Journal of Medicine, the Boston Globe, the Lancet, the Los Angeles Review of Books, and other publications, and has been featured on National Public Radio. Dr. Koven lives with her family near Boston.
Gish Jen is an award-winning author whose short work has appeared in the New Yorker, the Atlantic Monthly, and dozens of other collections. Her work has appeared in The Best American Short Stories four times, including The Best American Short Stories of the Century, edited by John Updike. Jen is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and has been awarded a Lannan Literary Award for Fiction and a Guggenheim fellowship. Her latest novel, The Resisters, is her eighth book.
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