Review: Ross Gray & Christina Sinding (2002). Standing Ovation: Performing Social Science Research about Cancer
Standing Ovation describes the development of a theatrical performance about people with metasticized breast cancer, which was developed for hospital personnel, cancer patients, their family members, and the public. The authors, members of a research team based at Toronto Sunnybrook Regional Cancer Centre, were joined by actors who either came from an actor's studio or who were patients or activists in the breast cancer community. The goal was to create a drama based on focus group material collected around the question of what information should be given to metastasized breast cancer patients, and from interviews with oncologists. The book is accompanied by a video-tape of the performance. Thus, one is able to see the outcome of the ethnographic studies and artistic endeavors that are described in the book. The book and videotape are unique contributions to the literature on relations with patients who have very serious diseases. The hopeful, yet reasonable, perspective on this difficult situation is very well presented in the book and videotape.
breast cancer; oncology; performance art; collaborative learning; community theatre; health practitioners; Canadian health system