Treasures, Talents

& the Human Spirit 

March 15, 2017

5:30pm - 8:00pm

Lester Hall, Room 104

Creative Resilience & Aging: Louis Armstrong, Race, & Growing Old in the ‘60s

Jeffrey M. Lyness, MD, FACPPsych

Professor of Psychiatry and Neurology

University of Rochester Medical Center


Jeffrey LynessDr. Lyness, Professor of Psychiatry and Neurology, is Senior Associate Dean for Academic Affairs at the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry. He also is a Psychiatry Director for the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology. He formerly served as Director of Curriculum and as Medical Director for Continuing Medical Education for the UR medical school. Former Associate Chair for Education in Psychiatry and Director of the Geriatric Psychiatry Program, he is a Past President of the American Association for Geriatric Psychiatry. His research has examined the relationships between depression and medical illnesses in later life, and have been supported by grants from NIH, NARSAD, and industry. Dr. Lyness received his M.D. degree with Honor and with Distinction in Research from the University of Rochester, completed his internship in internal medicine there, and then was a psychiatry resident at Yale University. He completed clinical and research fellowship training in the Geriatric Psychiatry Program at Rochester. He has published journal articles, book chapters, and books, and has been fortunate to receive several awards for his clinical, teaching, and scholarly efforts, including being named an Apple Distinguished Educator.  

Abstract

Louis Armstrong (1901-1971) was among the century’s most beloved musicians and public personalities, serving as “Ambassador Satch” on a never-ending tour that took him to virtually every corner of the world. Yet for all his fame, too few understand the depths of his artistry, an astoundingly innovative and influential performer as both trumpeter and vocalist. Even jazz-fan admirers of his 1920s recordings often dismiss his later work. The truth is that Louis continued to mature as an artist throughout his later decades, working in an ever-widening variety of contexts and reaching places never attained by the younger Louis. This presentation will use the techniques of biography, illustrated with images, video, and audio, to examine how Armstrong regained his creativity as he approached age 50, maintaining this standard of excellence well into his 60s, and “the ‘60s,” while adapting to declining physical health. Along the way, we will consider the complex issues of race surrounding his career, including public perceptions that changed from seeing him as a racial pioneer to, increasingly, viewing his grinning enthusiasm as evidence that he was an out-of-date “Uncle Tom” — all despite Armstrong’s own strongly held views about race relations and the burgeoning civil rights movement. This biographical perspective will help deepen our appreciation for the creative potential in aging, and for the complexities of race perceptions in America that persist to this day.

Format

The session will begin with a presentation of narrated commentary to a stimulating mix of video, audio, and images. This will be followed by interactive large-group Q & A and discussion, organized around three potential overall questions:

  • How can we apply the theme of creative resilience and aging, as demonstrated by Armstrong’s biography, to educating clinicians in their work with older patients and family members?
  • What are the implications of Armstrong’s story, as related to changing perceptions of race in America, for health care professionals and for medical education?
  • How can we enrich medical education by using technology to infuse the arts and humanities into our teaching efforts?

 

 

 

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Treasures, Talents
& the Human Spirit

March 15, 2017

5:30pm - 8:00pm

Lester Hall, Room 104

Creative Resilience & Aging:
Louis Armstrong, Race, & Growing Old in the ‘60s

Jeffrey M. Lyness, MD, FACPPsych

Professor of Psychiatry and Neurology

University of Rochester Medical Center

Dr. Lyness, Professor of Psychiatry and Neurology, is Senior Associate Dean for Academic Affairs at the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry. He also is a Psychiatry Director for the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology. He formerly served as Director of Curriculum and as Medical Director for Continuing Medical Education for the UR medical school. Former Associate Chair for Education in Psychiatry and Director of the Geriatric Psychiatry Program, he is a Past President of the American Association for Geriatric Psychiatry. His research has examined the relationships between depression and medical illnesses in later life, and have been supported by grants from NIH, NARSAD, and industry. Dr. Lyness received his M.D. degree with Honor and with Distinction in Research from the University of Rochester, completed his internship in internal medicine there, and then was a psychiatry resident at Yale University. He completed clinical and research fellowship training in the Geriatric Psychiatry Program at Rochester. He has published journal articles, book chapters, and books, and has been fortunate to receive several awards for his clinical, teaching, and scholarly efforts, including being named an Apple Distinguished Educator.  

Abstract

Louis Armstrong (1901-1971) was among the century’s most beloved musicians and public personalities, serving as “Ambassador Satch” on a never-ending tour that took him to virtually every corner of the world. Yet for all his fame, too few understand the depths of his artistry, an astoundingly innovative and influential performer as both trumpeter and vocalist. Even jazz-fan admirers of his 1920s recordings often dismiss his later work. The truth is that Louis continued to mature as an artist throughout his later decades, working in an ever-widening variety of contexts and reaching places never attained by the younger Louis. This presentation will use the techniques of biography, illustrated with images, video, and audio, to examine how Armstrong regained his creativity as he approached age 50, maintaining this standard of excellence well into his 60s, and “the ‘60s,” while adapting to declining physical health. Along the way, we will consider the complex issues of race surrounding his career, including public perceptions that changed from seeing him as a racial pioneer to, increasingly, viewing his grinning enthusiasm as evidence that he was an out-of-date “Uncle Tom” — all despite Armstrong’s own strongly held views about race relations and the burgeoning civil rights movement. This biographical perspective will help deepen our appreciation for the creative potential in aging, and for the complexities of race perceptions in America that persist to this day.

Format

The session will begin with a presentation of narrated commentary to a stimulating mix of video, audio, and images. This will be followed by interactive large-group Q & A and discussion, organized around three potential overall questions:

How can we apply the theme of creative resilience and aging, as demonstrated by Armstrong’s biography, to educating clinicians in their work with older patients and family members?What are the implications of Armstrong’s story, as related to changing perceptions of race in America, for health care professionals and for medical education?How can we enrich medical education by using technology to infuse the arts and humanities into our teaching efforts?