Clown doctors in NYC

Before reading this article, I could have ever imagined this concept.  Imagine a child sitting quietly in a hospital bed, not understanding what all the tubes around them mean and why they are even there.  In walks a man or women dressed head to toe in clown attire.  In this article, the author discusses the similarities between “clown doctors” and shamons.  In a world full of prescriptions and allopathic medicine, these people bring a little light into new traditions of social healing.  It has been proven that the emotion in the hospital was much more upbeat with those clown doctors around.  Just their presence proved to be a positive for those working and the patients in the hospital.  The practices of medicine are, for the most part, over a pediatric patient’s head but these clown doctors present medicine in a way that these kids can fully understand.  Although clown doctors don’t necessarily cure the illnesses that some children may suffer from, they do make the medical environment more child-friendly.  Part of their job is to present themselves as “silly and inept” to make the child feel that they are empowered and can help someone.  The article mentions that children are the least powerful in a hospital situation.  They are poked and prodded by doctors and talked at by their worried parents.  The clowns may play hide and seek with the child and hide in ridiculously obvious places or fail miserably at a magic trick until the child finally “teaches” them how to do the trick correctly.  The world that these people work in is completely opposite of their own.  In a place surrounded by big words and even bigger decisions, clown doctors give kids a better way to heal themselves.  It is actually recorded that two little girls actually came out of a coma during one of the clown doctor’s performances.

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