chapter  5
31 Pages

The Big C Meets the Big O: Pain and Pleasure in Breast Cancer Narratives

Good Morning America co-anchor Robin Roberts announced her breast cancer diagnosis on daytime television on July 31, 2007. She not only made her personal experience a public affair but she also narrativized it by adding an eighth chapter to her book, From the Heart: Seven Rules to Live By , and appeared on Nightline . Her public battle with illness intensifi ed when she needed a bone marrow transplant in 2012. I turn briefl y to Roberts’s public battle with breast cancer as an indexical entrance to the discussion that follows. Roberts’s narrative raises questions about the centrality of pain within a breast cancer narrative and what discursive or activist space pain can open.