Paul Farmer

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It is a good thing that life is not as serious as it seems to a waiter.
Don Herold
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Dr. Paul Farmer (b. October 26 1959, Adams, Massachusetts) is an American professor and physician, currently the Presley Professor of Medical Anthropology at Harvard University and an attending physician at Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston, Massachusetts. In 1987, he helped found the international health and social justice organization Partners In Health (PIH).

Pathologies of Power

  • In an age of explosive development in the realm of medical technology, it is unnerving to find that the discoveries of Salk, Sabin, and even Pasteur remain irrelevant to much of humanity.
    • page 144.

Mountains Beyond Mountains

  • I can’t sleep. There’s always somebody not getting treatment. I can’t stand that.
    • quoted on page 24.

  • God gives us humans everything we need to flourish, but he’s not the one who’s supposed to divvy up the loot. . . You want to see where Christ crucified abides today? Go to where the poor are suffering and fighting back, and that’s where He is.
    • quoted on page 79.

  • I’m going to build my own fucking hospital. And there’ll be none of that there, thank you.
    • quoted on page 81.

Quotes About Paul Farmer

  • [It] was seemly [of Paul], I thought, resisting beatification. But then he told me, “People call me a saint and I think, I have to work harder. Because a saint would be a great thing to be.” . . . I felt a small inner disturbance. It wasn’t that the words seemed immodest. I felt I was in the presence of a different person from the one I’d been chatting with a moment ago, someone whose ambitions I hadn’t yet begun to fathom.
    • Tracy Kidder, Mountains Beyond Mountains, page 16.

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