The Price of Experience
Writings on Living with Cancer

Marqusee, Mike

Publisher:  OR Books
Date Written:  15/05/2014
Year Published:  2014  
Pages:  120pp   Price:  $13   ISBN:  978-1-939293-44-2
Resource Type:  Book
Cx Number:  CX19783

Writer and political activist Mike Marqusee was diagnosed with multiple myeloma, a type of blood cancer, in the summer of 2007. At first, disinclined to share his misery with others, he was reluctant to write about his illness. But he then came to realize that doing so provided a precious continuity with his life as a writer before contracting the disease, and a way of reaching out to a wider world that the illness made physically less accessible. Writing allowed him to address what he saw as a variety of insidious platitudes that surround cancer, often connected to the individualistic idea that the sufferer must be brave in battling the disease, with the inevitable corollary that those who succumb have, in some measure, brought it on themselves. And so Marqusee begins to write about his illness. Not just his own symptoms and feelings, but the responses of friends to the news that he is ill and the way these reflect broader social attitudes towards the sick.

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