The Cover Section Editor: M. Therese Southgate,
MD, Senior Contributing Editor.
Alice Neel (1900-1984) was a modern artist who had painted the portraits
of many famous, gifted, and wealthy people. More often, however, she painted
the poor, the depressed, and the ill. Her paintings show more than people;
they are a historical record of life in 20th-century America.
At the turn of the century tuberculosis was the leading cause of death
in the United States. It spared no social class but ravaged most severely
the poor who lived in crowded ghettos such as New York City’s Harlem.
Barclay WR. T.B. Harlem. JAMA. 2005;293(22):2696. doi:10.1001/jama.293.22.2696