I am an Assistant Professor in English and the new Interdisciplinary Centre for Health & Society (ICHS) at the University of Toronto Scarborough, where I am also the lead developer of Canada’s first undergraduate program in Health Humanities.
Alongside my undergraduate duties at UTSC, I also hold a cross-appointment in the Faculty of Medicine’s Department of Psychiatry and graduate faculty appointments in the University of Toronto’s Graduate Department of English and the Collaborative Graduate Program in Women’s Health at the Women’s College Research Institute. I am the Founding Director and Principal Investigator of SCOPE: The Health Humanities Learning Lab, an arts- and humanities-based research and education initiative that launched in Summer 2016.
In addition to earning recognition for my scholarship and teaching in literature (the field in which I earned my PhD), I have also had a productive career as a medical researcher. This interdisciplinary background has shaped my interest in the relationship between the humanities, health, and medicine in multiple ways, including: peer-reviewed publications, innovative undergraduate curriculum design, clinician training, conference organization, hospital-based narrative training initiatives, invited lectures and medical grand rounds. I am also the author or editor of two recent books in the fields of Age Studies and Health Humanities (2020).
I was born in Ottawa, Canada, but much of my life has been spent abroad. I was educated primarily in England and Indonesia, and I’ve lived in Italy, Greece, the American Midwest, and the United Arab Emirates. I’m always keen to connect with colleagues who are interested in interdisciplinary conceptualizations of health and illness, especially arts/humanities-based methods, theory, and creative practices (e.g., literature, film, visual arts).
You can follow me on Twitter at @AndreaCharise.