Health and Behavior Magazine Articles

Mark McClellan

July 22, 2020

Mark McClellan is the founding director of the Duke-Margolis Center for Health Policy and former commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration

What does the fall season look like with the coronavirus? 

August 7, 2019


Madison Catrett

The blue glow of my laptop was the only light in my dorm room. I stared at the screen, my eyes glued to a table ranking twenty-eight methods of suicide based on lethality, time required, and agony. A shotgun to the head would be lethal and almost painless, but there would be a lot of splatter. Jumping would require a building at least 150 feet tall, and there were plenty of those around, but it would also be messy.

August 11, 2017

My grandfather cracks open his bedroom door and pushes his face carefully into the thin crease between the door and the frame.

My mother is in the hallway.

“Hi, Dad,” she says to his eye, backlit against a slice of bedroom light. “Come on out, Dad. It’s okay.”

September 25, 2014


Bridget Booher

During the hot, humid summers spent on her grandmother’s farm in Randolph County, North Carolina, Terrie Moffitt witnessed the endless universal loop of creation and destruction. She and her fourteen cousins delighted in bottle-feeding calves and finding nests of baby rabbits, learned to spot snakes camouflaged in garden rows, suffered the painful curse of poison ivy. Nature, in all its majesty and violence, gave rise to discoveries both wondrous and frightening.

August 1, 2014


Iyanu Oke

When asked which of the four countries she has lived in she considers home, she stumbles. So Iyanu decided to explore four different definitions of home.

Produced for The Short Audio Documentary course taught by John Biewen at the Center for Documentary Studies.

July 22, 2014


New page turners on the shelves

Bravery, humility, loyalty, and service are the common threads linking the soldiers profiled in Valor: Unsung Heroes From Iraq, Afghanistan, and the Home Front by Mark Lee Greenblatt ’95.

July 18, 2014


Jacob Tobia

The cashier at the Dollar General gave me a somewhat confused glance as I checked out, looking at me with a combination of perplexity and shyness. He did not quite understand what my purchase would be used for, but he also seemed too shy to ask. And so, without explanation, I paid for my item and left.

July 18, 2014

Eleven years ago, when my wife, Leah, and I were far from home in the Anbar province of Iraq, American friends with whom we were traveling had a car accident. Three of them split their heads open on impact and stumbled out of the car onto a dusty highway strewn with the debris of war. A car of Iraqis stopped, took them into their car, and drove them to a town called Rutba. There a doctor spoke to them in perfect English: “Three days ago, your country bombed our hospital.

July 18, 2014


Safa al-Saeedi

I grew up in a household where my dad has been always supportive. He always praised women for their minds and for their compassion. I never got the sense from my father that women were inferior; I never felt that I was less than my brothers. Whenever he would see an amazing woman on television, like a scholar or a scientist, he would always tell me to come and watch. My dad supported me in my travels and when I decided not to be a doctor in my career choice.

July 18, 2014

At some point or another, most of us have been afflicted by homesickness—that pang of nostalgia and longing for familiar people and places. To understand the origin and purpose of homesickness, we asked Mark Leary, professor of psychology and neuroscience and the director of Duke’s social psychology program, to give us some insight into this common human experience.

How would you define homesickness?

Erik Goodge (photo by Justin Lubke)

July 18, 2014


Sabrina Lee

Sitting a comfortable distance from the U.S. military conflicts abroad, I had envisioned “coming home” as both a welcome departure from the battlefield and a new beginning for returning veterans. However, my perspective shifted upon interviewing one of the subjects from my first documentary.

July 18, 2014


James Tulsky

“I’m going home. That’s it. I don’t want to hear anything else!”

Don Byrne enters the garden through one of four gates.

July 18, 2014

ON A MORNING in early 2006, Don Byrne walked through an overgrown field of grass. Alongside trudged his father, who, despite the early hour, carried a bottle of Jameson Irish whiskey. At the highest point on the land, the two men paused. It was here that they wanted to drill the well. In a makeshift christening, they sprinkled the land with liquor.

April 29, 2014

Having HIV testing close to one’s home makes in more likely that one will get tested. At the same time, HIV preferences vary greatly across individuals, according to new research conducted by Duke Global Health Institute faculty members. The findings could help inform how HIV-testing services are adapted and expanded across sub-Saharan Africa.

April 29, 2014

The old saying goes, “Yawns are contagious,” but have you considered the biology behind it? While previous studies have suggested a connection between contagious yawning and empathy, new research from the Duke Center for Human Genome Variation finds that contagious yawning may decrease with age and is not strongly related to variables like empathy, tiredness, and energy levels.

April 29, 2014

Kara Medoff Barnett ’00 began taking ballet classes at the age of three and entertained the idea of becoming a professional dancer before she was sidelined with an injury in high school. By the time she arrived at Duke, she had switched her sights from arts to medicine, taking pre-med courses and volunteering with the student-run Emergency Medical Services group.

Can pills crush the pain?

April 28, 2014


Taylor Sisk

Jeffrey Swanson, a professor in the Duke School of Medicine’s department of psychiatry and behavioral sciences, offers an analogy for perceptions of mental health. “There’s this continuum between night and day, and there’s this moment, dusk, where you can’t really tell the difference between night and day.” Dusk suggests that there is no absolute of either; that it’s a question of degree.

Photo of a lonely child

May 14, 2013

We all know bullying is painful to endure, but new research shows that bullied children are at a greater risk of developing anxiety disorders, depression, and suicidal thoughts as adults.

“We were surprised at how profoundly bullying affects a person’s long-term functioning,” says William E. Copeland, assistant clinical professor in the psychiatry department. “This psychological damage doesn’t just go away because a person grew up and is no longer bullied.”