WELCOME TO CANCERLAND A mammogram leads to a cult of pink kitsch. By Barbara Ehrenreich. I was thinking of it as one of those drive-by mammograms. Barbara Ehrenreich: Welcome to Cancerland. In this essay Ehrenreich takes a surprising and somewhat controversial take on Breast Cancer. Barbara Ehrenreich is a freelance writer and feminist activist who wrote the award-winning article “Welcome to Cancerland”, to express her own.

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Having said this, one of the wwelcome themes I took from this essay beside the ones that have already been mentioned is the struggle of conformity.

Welcome to cancerland | Harper’s Magazine

Barbara resorts to her knowledge of cell biology, asks to see her own tumor under the microscope, and contemplates the meaning of visualizing the malignant cells even if she does not believe the exercise can help her. She points to the teddy bears, ribbons, and crayons among other items and states that these cancerlanf and ideas that come with them are wrong. As Gina wrote, Barbara seems quite emotionless in her approach towards breast cancer, but she also almost seems annoyed at the idea of becoming part of what is really a twisted trend.

Home about this blog blog guidelines blog rubric. However, when a young man or woman is still shining full of life, and life deals one cancer, it becomes excruciatingly difficult to believe in our invincibility.

It was certainty that she would not fall prey to a false sense of security and would not be reassured by a plush toy. I also understood this twisted expectation for negativity, as I felt so alone that no one could see or admit the personal hell I was experiencing. Throughout the essay, it seems that Ehrenreich lacks the emotional component that seems to be typical of anyone in a similar situation.


Email required Address never made public. About Me Kristen C. I never would have read it without your recommendation. Yes, it is horrible, and painful, but it something that she dealt with and is history. Leave a comment Filed under week 6 Tagged as Barbara Smuts.

As Gina and Raphie mentioned, though she knows that she has no place to say anything to the doctors, she does mind how removed from the situation she is.

However, when you really think about it, what did they do that separates them from the survivors. As my cancer career unfolds, I will… become a composite of the living and the dead-an implant to replace the breast, a wig to replace the hair.

The fear she went through when the radiologist will not answer any questions about what they may or may not have seen on her mammogram results was apparent and the length of time she had to wait to get her mammogram results bothered Barbara as well.

Continuing with the loss of identity, Ehrenreich feels that the nameless doctors and radiologists have more to do with the entire process of diagnosis and recovery than she does herself.

She dissects the rank commercialism and denial in the survivor movement: Since Barbara received her Ph. Visiopoetics February 18, at You may use these HTML tags and attributes: Alternative methods for treatment are available; numerous celebrities like Suzanne Somers have also published books discussing their success with alternative medicine in destroying cancer.


In the beginning, the focus is more about her removal from the minds of the doctors. It dissects the positive messages and encouragement that come with the pink bows and awareness.

Happy xmas to you, Twisty, and to all blamers.

Welcome To Cancerland

But what upset Ehrenreich the most in my opinion were the labels and connotations which were given to her solely based on her unfortunate situation. I wish you another merry trip around ehrengeich sun. Click here for proper attribution technique.

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Although at some points throughout the reading I was initially irked by the negativity, it was a refreshingly realistic approach. Barbara wishes that these survivors understand the bad intentions of the pink ribbons and teddy bears.

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Barbara makes this simile to help readers visualize and understand how these cells look like because she understands that ewlcome general public has very few or no scientific background. Physically speaking, Barbara experienced what we all know to be the painful affects of being diagnosed with breast cancer but on other levels she was rocked worse.

Although she is unlikely to agree, something good came from her cancer. As I continued through the essay and I was welcoome into her world and I started to understand it all. A good majority of the people who supports these societies are cancer survivors themselves.

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