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A Piece of My Mind
December 18, 2018

The Labor of Representation

Author Affiliations
  • 1Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts
JAMA. 2018;320(23):2423-2424. doi:10.1001/jama.2018.18006

In college, a professor cautioned me that future patients would feel “much more comfortable” if I dressed and acted more “femininely.” One medical school interviewer found 4 different ways to ask if I thought it would be awkward to interact with female patients as a queer woman in obstetrics. A friend warned me not to be “out” in medical school after he spent his first year tokenized as one of the few openly gay students who was consistently asked to help fill in the many curricular gaps regarding health issues affecting the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) community.

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