On Nov. 9, one of America’s leading health care advocates, Michele Harper, MD, spoke at “Healing Voices” — a health-care-focused branch of USC’s “Visions and Voices” lecture series. Her talk, titled, “Radical Truths: The Power of Storytelling to Dismantle Racism in Medicine,” included stories from her best-selling book, The Beauty of Breaking: A Memoir.

Over the course of her career as an emergency medicine physician, Harper has witnessed the horrific realities of domestic abuse, gun violence, racism and misogyny. As a Black woman and domestic abuse survivor, she felt such deep empathy for her patients that she began writing about them in order to cope. Eventually these writings became The Beauty of Breaking. Now dedicated to healing others in ways that go beyond medical, she has become one of the country’s most well-respected advocates for a more equitable and compassionate approach to health care.

In addition to being a physician, author and speaker, Harper is also the recipient of the 2022 Gold Foundation National Humanism in Medicine Medal.

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