Unit 1, Day 2: Wed. Feb. 8th

  1. READ and ANNOTATE “HERS” by Perri Klass. In this article, the writer paints a portrait, not of a particular word, but of a whole new language she had to learn in order to fit in with her new profession. While you are reading, ANNOTATE places  in the text that caught your eye, where you wanted to know more, where you were confused or where you related!
  2. WRITE: At least 300 words. What community is Klass a part of? What is an example of the whole new language that she had to learn (be specific!). What are some communities that you are a part of? (hint: we’re all a part of multiple communities!) What “languages” have you had to learn to engage with these communities—and how did you learn these languages? Are there particular words or phrases that stick out to you as helping you feel like you were part of the in-crowd? Post on OpenLab.


  1. KarriemTaylor

    Link to annotations of the article: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1N9qHpbFWlTwqJi-wHhLy3C3bNkbKDq-ZuieH38Q-bBY/edit?usp=sharing

    The community that Klass is a part of is the Doctor community. An example from the article “Hers” by Perri Klass is a quote from one of Klass’s colleagues, it says ” Well, we’ve already had one hit today, and we’re up next, but at least we’ve got mostly stable players on our team.” In this quote it shows Klass hearing a colleague speak using the whole new language by using this code like way if speaking that the doctors should understand. A community that I am a part of is the basketball community. I had to learn the basketball language in order to engage with the community. An example of the language that I had to learn to engage with this community was “And one” meaning when a person is watching someone else or shooting the ball themselves and they say “And one” it means that they believed that were fouled as the person took a shot and made it, or the person was fouled in general while shooting. I learned the language by just growing up watching basketball learning game myself and hearing how people outside, on the internet, and tv spoke. When it comes to this community there aren’t any particular words or phrases that stick out to me as helping me feel like I was part of the in-crowd. Another community that I am apart of is the American football community. I had to learn the language of American football in order to engage with the community. An example of the language I had to learn was “go for it”. This means that when it is fourth down and someone says this, they want the offensive team to run a normal play on fourth down instead of kicking a field goal or punting the ball to the other team. I learned the language of this community the same way I learned the language of the basketball community. I just grew up learning the game myself and from others in person, the internet, and listening to how they spoke. Again, there aren’t any particular words or phrases that stick out to me as helping me feel like I was part of the in-crowd.

  2. Maria Solis Cohetero

    Perri Klass is part of the medical community. She is within the medical field where you are introduced to a new language that at first is confusing and is gibberish to you. An example of the new language she had to learn was a lot of abbreviations. She was told by an intern “ MRS. TOLSTOY is your basic L.O.L in N.A.D., admitted for a soft rule- out M.I.,” something that is totally confusing to those that aren’t in the medical profession. I myself didn’t know what L.O.L meant. I would say I belong to the medical community as well but in specific the radiology community. I have also felt lost when I started my career going into new words every day spoken by attendings, radiologists and my own coworkers. In my community there aren’t many abbreviations used but more of a specific language that I didn’t know before being in this community. I learned this new language by being exposed to it daily during college and at work and often using it when speaking to radiologists and doctors. As coworkers we do speak common English but there’s points where we have to use our radiology language to communicate and understand what is to be done. A particular phrase we use as Klass uses would be “I got a hit,”. This is usually our typical saying since in CT we are always bombarded with patients. At my workplace we are a stroke and level 1 trauma center so we get all the emergencies most of the time. There are calm days where we don’t get any strokes or traumas but we have regular emergency department patients who are scheduled for scans. There is also a part of the text where Klass says “Oh, she boxed last night.” To box is to die, of course,” this is something I have never heard, we would say “the patient has expired”. Within the medical field, there are various departments (nursing, doctors, respiratory therapists, etc.) that use a totally different language and some may not understand what another medical professional is trying to say. 

  3. Mamadou

    Link to the appropriate annotations for this excerpt can be found below: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1kV7pTyp1s3PkLhAu1wPLBVk__t9a4v8f9uf5ewK7wZ0/edit?usp=sharing

    To begin, I’d like to outline how phenomenal this piece of text caught my eye. As we witness from a first person perspective, Peri Klass is a student investing their time into the medical field in order to pick up an understanding of how it all works, with the use of understanding abbreviations as her main prerogative (for three months). She’s apart of the medicinal community, using her own skills and learning experience to understand patient behavior and emotional impact. As she states, “I started out in a state of primeval innocence, in which I didn’t even know that “s C.P., S.O.B., N/V” meant without chest pain, shortness of breath, or nausea and vomiting.”. This example is used to outline prior confusion she had with abbreviations, introducing her audience to a compute language doctors and nurses alike share within the institution. She touched upon understanding this language in order to corroborate with others alike (nurses, doctors) of how easy it can be to be used as a means of communication, as well as not making patients underwhelmed.

    As Klass states, “These special languages contribute to a sense of closeness and professional spirit among people who are under a great deal of stress; Some people seem to become enamored of the jargon for its own sake, perhaps because they are so deeply thrilled with the idea of medicine, with the idea of themselves as doctors.” There’s a lot Klass is breaking down by saying this so I’ll dig a little deep into this:

    • The idea that understanding a language, primarily ones doctors use, can thicken and sharpen the doctor’s intellect of how to use abbreviations as a form of communication is very special. For students getting into the medical field, it serves as a level of interaction and basic comprehension of success getting to understand certain abbreviations patients, most if not all, do not garner.
    • Understanding the way doctors speak can make it easy on patients, as it can provide a good jargon of trust as well as ultimately, reducing emotional impact a patient can have.

    With that being said, I myself am apart of the NBA community. As a basketball fan for many years, I am well aware of all the schematics this league has to provide, and learning how to use basketball language is very important especially for this community. I wouldn’t resolute to calling basketball language a “language”, but primarily for the NBA the language of statistics can be very difficult to learn when you’re getting into the sport.

    For example, there are many ‘local statistics’ and ‘advanced statistics’ that fans use to form their own narratives around a certain player, team, or franchise in general. Statistics like PPG, AST, and REB can all account for these ‘languages’ fans use in basketball discussion. Advanced statistics, on the other hand, presents a user with many “skewed” or otherwise interesting information about a player’s actual production on the court. One player I’d go as far as using for this topic is Luka Doncic, the league’s up-and-coming NBA generational talent. He withholds the highest player usage % in the league as of current day, and is an MVP caliber player at face value. With a guy like Nikola Jokic, who deservingly gets attention everywhere about his overwhelming advanced statistics, he gets a lot of recognition of being a top talent in the NBA – at the cusp of winning his 3rd league MVP, in a row.

  4. Miguel

    Klass belongs to the medical discourse community because she works as an intern in a hospital. In this community, their doctors have unique communication methods, such as very confusing jargon and abbreviations of words. An example in the article proves that Klass practice place is full of many new languages, a language that only doctors can understand. “in which I didn’t even know that” s C.P., S.O.B., N/ V “meant” without chest pain, shortness of breath, or nausea and vomiting “. During her months at Klass, she learned a new language that allowed her to get to know her colleagues and communicate with them more effectively in the hospital.

    I used to belong to the discourse community of a game called PUBG. At the beginning of the epidemic, there was no time to go out to play at home due to the lockdown at the beginning of the epidemic, so video games became the first choice. I joined the game community with my friends. There are eight levels of PUBG from Bronze up to our conqueror, and people in our community share the same goal of being promoted to the highest level. We have several platforms to provide information and feedback, the most famous one is Baidu Tieba, when you enter the platform you can read all the information about our pubg  community, and players will send information like the latest game updates that weapon damage will increase or various game guides. We also have a single language that we can use in the game like lyb, which is an abbreviation for a very sinister person, deliberately seducing others, or waiting somewhere for the enemy to attack

  5. Mayra Penafiel

    klass is part of the medical community, in which she had to learn a whole new medical language for how she will refer to her patients or speak with her colleagues. for example her community language had many code words that meant a certain definition or abbreviations inorder to communicate something from the patient for example the text stated “C.P., S.O.B., N/ V” meant without chest pain shortness of breath, or nausea and vomiting.”, these are possibly symptoms one of her colleagues would write on the patients board and if you end up having to check on that patient youll need to know what it means. another example is when it was stated that “”Oh, she boxed last night.” To box is to die, of course.” in the medical community the word “boxed” means “die” but outside that community the word “boxed” can mean many different things such as the sport boxing or even packaging.

    A community that i say ive belonged too and have been part of is a girls high school soccer team, when i joined this team by coach had his way of saying specific instructions in this langauge for example he used the phrase “fall back” this typically would mean fall on your back but in his case fall back meant to go a little back from the net there fore if the goalkeeper kicks it far we wont have to sprint back for it. when it comes to soccer there are different languages depending on how the coach coaches but most depend on plays so only your specific team can know what youre doing, another example is corner kicks, in our team for corner kicks we had numbers designated to a specific play that only we understood but inorder to understand we needed to know what play corresponded to the number the kicker would put up before shooting. You get a hang of there languages as you practice as a team and its pretty straightforawrd when its shown and explained to you by the person teaching you which is usually your coach.

  6. Santiago Jimenez

    Klass is part of a community of Doctors, nurses, and hospitals.  in the article Kless talks about becoming part of a community and how it requires learning the lingo of the community you are merging into, in Kless case is learning how to speak like a doctor and gives examples of how doctor is suppose to talk like using baseball terms such as “getting hit” referring to getting a lot of patients at once, or “unit player is a patient in the intensive-care unit”. she also explains the reason as to why doctors and nurses use this type of language in front of there patient to prevent or lessen any emotional distress one example being ‘When chemotherapy fails to cure Mrs. Bacon’s cancer, what we say is, ”Mrs. Bacon failed chemotherapy.”’ It says the same thing but in a different way and in a way it doesn’t blame Mrs.Bacon but gives the feeling of there being more options giving hope to the patient and removing the blame. Kless also explains that although this type of language is important is also important not to over use it or extend the abbreviations to terms that even the over medical staff can’t understand, Mr.Eponym is one such example Kless talks about how he would over use it “He would lovingly tell over the multinamed syndromes – Wolff-Parkinson-White, Lown-Ganong-Levine, Henoch- Schonlein – until the temptation to suggest Schleswig-Holstein or Stevenson-Kefauver or Baskin-Robbins became irresistible to his less reverent colleagues.”

    using this special language leads to create “a sense of closeness and professional spirit among people” as well as making the difference between speaking like a doctor from being a doctor, when a person get to a point when this type of language becomes natural and doesn’t even notice that when you know you have made it. 

  7. Justin He

    Klass is part of the medical article, Klass discusses the importance of learning languages and assimilating into the community of doctors, nurses, and hospitals. She gives examples of the specific language used by medical professionals, such as referring to a sudden influx of patients as “getting hit” and patients in the intensive-care unit as “unit players.” This language is important not only to sound like a doctor but also to prevent emotional distress for patients. By framing medical situations in a less accusatory manner, such as saying “Mrs. Bacon failed chemotherapy” instead of “chemotherapy failed Mrs. Bacon,” the patient is given hope and the blame is removed.

    However, Klass warns against overusing medical jargon or abbreviations to the point where even experienced medical staff cannot understand them. She uses the example of Mr. Eponym, who would lovingly tell over the multi-named syndromes until his colleagues began making humorous suggestions of their own. Overuse of medical jargon can lead to confusion and miscommunication among medical professionals.

    Despite the potential pitfalls, Klass believes that using this special language fosters a sense of camaraderie and professionalism among medical professionals. The language helps to differentiate between speaking like a doctor and being a doctor, and those who have assimilated into the community will eventually reach a point where the language comes naturally and without conscious effort.

    Klass’s article underscores the importance of language in creating a shared sense of identity and purpose among professionals in a specific field. The language used by medical professionals not only facilitates communication and understanding but also creates a sense of belonging and camaraderie. By learning and mastering the unique language of their community, medical professionals can enhance their ability to provide quality care and support to their patients while strengthening their professional bonds with colleagues.

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