Gary Geddes discusses his recent work Medicine Unbundled: A Journey through the Minefields of Indigenous Health Care
Wednesday, September 13, 2017
Quest University Canada Multipurpose Room
Medicine Unbundled is composed of Gary Geddes’s interviews with Indigenous elders; their conversations center on the treatment of Indigenous youth in “Indian hospitals.” The survivors recount harrowing treatment–gratuitous surgical experiments, electroshock therapy to erase memories of sexual abuse–but Medicine Unbundled is not simply a story of horrible memories and painful histories. It is, rather, a testament to survival and to memory’s power to promote the idea of a more open and just future.
The author or editor of over thirty-five volumes, Gary Geddes is a Canadian scholar and author of great renown. His work encompasses drama, fiction, poetry, literary criticism, and non-fiction. He has been instrumental in the promotion of Canadian poetry, editing multiple anthologies on the subject. As “Canada’s premier political poet,” he has also authored numerous volumes of poetry, most recently The Resumption of Play.
Geddes’ non-fiction spans the globe–from B.C.’s Inside Passage (Sailing Home), to Rwanda and Uganda (Drink the Bitter Root), to Chiapas by way of Afghanistan (Kingdom of Ten Thousand Things). In his most recent work, Medicine Unbundled: A Journey through the Minefields of Indigenous Health Care, Geddes tackles the painful and underexplored history of indigenous health care in Canada. Published in Canada’s Year of Reconciliation (2017), Medicine Unbundled is sure to provoke further discussion as to the shape and nature of reconciliation.
Geddes has taught at Concordia University, the University of Victoria, and Western Washington University. He has been the writer-in-residence for the University of Ottawa, McMaster University, and the Vancouver Public Library. Among many other honours, Geddes has received the Lieutenant Governor’s Award for Literary Excellence.