1st Edition

Metacognition, Metahumanities, and Medical Education Thinking Without the Box

    260 Pages 3 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    This persuasive volume develops a novel approach to medical education and the medical humanities, making a case for the integration of the two to explore the ways in which ‘warm’ humanism and ‘cold’ technologies can come together to design humane posthumanist futures in medicine.

    There are many problems with conventional medical education. It can be overly technocratic, dehumanizing, and empathy-eroding, introducing artefacts that lead to harm and reproduce inequality and injustice. Use of the arts, humanities, and qualitative social sciences have been pursued as an antidote or balance to these problems. Arguing against the purely instrumentalist use of medical humanities in this way, this book addresses the importance of a genuine and open-ended engagement with humanities approaches in medicine. It discusses the impact of artificial intelligence and emerging theoretical frameworks and posthumanist perspectives, such as object-oriented ontology, on meaning making in medicine. It demonstrates how the key to such a transition is the recovery of the intrinsic art and humanity of metaphor-heavy biomedical science, in turn framed by models of dynamic complexity rather than static linearity.

    This book is an important contribution to debates around the medical humanities and its role in medical education. It is an essential read for scholars with an interest in these areas, as well as those working in science and technology studies and the sociology of health and illness.




    Alan Bleakley, Quentin Eichbaum, Rachel Ellaway

    Stepping out from under the cloud of AI

    ‘Meta’ has an origin myth

    Thinking without the box

    Originary sources on metacognition: Pina Tarricone and Andy Clark

    The originary source on meta-affect: John Heron

    Problems with conventional medical education

    Overview of chapters


    PART 1

    1: Forms of metahumanism

    Alan Bleakley

    2: Meta-cognition and the making of meaning

    Alan Bleakley

    3: Metacognition, meta-affect, and the clinical encounter: language matters

    Alan Bleakley

    4: Knowing more than we can say: the tacit dimension and the unconscious ego

    Alan Bleakley

    5: Thinking outside the brain: the extended mind and metahumanities

    Quentin Eichbaum

    6: Heuristics and metaheuristics

    Rachel Ellaway

    PART 2

    7: Forms of attention: the ground for meta-cognition

    Alan Bleakley

    8: Perception: immaculate or illusory? Whither then metacognition and metahumanities?

    Quentin Eichbaum

    9: Capability, augmentation, metacognition

    Rachel Ellaway

    10: Realising the extended mind

    Quentin Eichbaum

    11: Metacognition and pattern thinking

    Rachel Ellaway

    12: From empathy to compathy in medical education

    Alan Bleakley

    PART 3

    13: Metahumanities in medical education: a manifesto

    Rachel Ellaway, Quentin Eichbaum, Alan Bleakley



    Dr Alan Bleakley is Emeritus Professor of Medical Education and Medical Humanities at Plymouth University Peninsula School of Medicine, UK. He is Past President of the Association for Medical Humanities.

    Dr Rachel Ellaway is a Professor in the Department of Community Health Sciences and Director of the Office of Health and Medical Education Scholarship at the Cumming School of Medicine, University of Calgary, Alberta, Canada. She is also Editor in Chief of the journal Advances in Health Sciences Education.

    Dr Quentin Eichbaum is Professor of Pathology, Immunology and Microbiology at Vanderbilt University Medical Centre where he co-directs the Transfusion Medicine Service, and Professor of Medical Education and Administration at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine where he was Assistant Dean and developed and directed the College Colloquium medical humanities program.