Words by Peter Wilkins
Marie-Pier Caron and Ruhina Rana of the Bachelor of Science, Nursing program at Douglas College, Vancouver, did a poster presentation on I Know How This Ends (a companion comic to City/Chester/Douglas’s Parables of Care) at the West North-Western Region Canadian Association of Schools of Nursing conference in Edmonton Alberta on February 20-22, 2019.
The theme of the conference was Rejuvenating Nursing Education through Relational Practice.
The topic of the poster was Graphic Medicine as a Relational Practice in Dementia Care: Comics, Affect, and Immediacy. It was one of three posters relating the arts to nursing care. The others were on music therapy and dementia care and arts-based instructional strategies in mobile learning.
The poster featured artwork by Melissa Martins from the formational stage of I Know How This Ends and attracted a lot of attention. Copies of Parables of Care were also on hand.
Visitors to the poster were impressed with the possibilities of using comics as an icebreaker for discussing dementia in a classroom setting because of the visceral power of the medium. Most suggested that they would not have thought of using comics as an educational tool.
Marie and Ruhina were surprised to discover some pushback from nurses on the term “Graphic Medicine.” Apparently, nurses in Canada have spent a lot of time establishing nursing as its own discipline and associate “medicine” specifically with doctors. This distinction might be useful to explore in future discussions of the sub-discipline. Perhaps “graphic healthcare” might be a more amenable term.
Marie and Ruhina wished they had a QR code to connect their audience with further information about the Parables of Care/ I Know How This Ends project. That is another thing to consider for the future.
Poster presentations are not always easy in big, crowded conferences as they are often squeezed into breaks between sessions and have to vie for attendees’ attention with coffee and snacks. Nevertheless, Marie and Ruhina were thrilled with the attention the poster received. It inspired them to continue with the project and develop it further.
Last year, Dr Peter Wilkins and Marie-Pier Caron of Douglas College did a presentation on the Parables of Care project at the Western Canada Health Science Educators conference in Parksville, British Columbia, May 17-18 2018.
For more information about the Canadian part of the Parables of Care project and I Know How This Ends, please contact Dr Peter Wilkins, wilkinsp at douglascollege.ca.
Parables of Care can be downloaded as a PDF file, under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License, from
- City Research Online, City, University of London: http://openaccess.city.ac.uk/18245/
- ChesterRep, University of Chester: http://chesterrep.openrepository.com/cdr/handle/10034/620684
- DOOR, Douglas College: http://dc.arcabc.ca/islandora/object/dc:18369?lrstc=1LBWB
- CORE, Humanities Commons: http://dx.doi.org/10.17613/M6FN7C
If you live in the UK you can request printed copies at no cost here.