Within “The Pain Scale” Eula Biss uses different concepts to relate to the reader her confusion about the pain scale used in hospitals today that. “On a scale of zero to ten, ten sending you to the emergency room, how bad is your As Eula Biss says in her essay “The Pain Scale,” “Zero doesn’t behave like. The Pain Scale. Eula Biss · English. Research output: Contribution to journal › Article. Language, English. Journal, Harper’s. State, Published – Jun

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I think the reason she does this is because it troubles her to think the fixed point of her scal is considered, according to some theories, nonexistent. In that case, is five really the mean? And one hundred is the point at which water boils. But I do not agree with the fact that she thinks zero is useless because Zero is used for many things in day-to-day life. I love your analysis of it, too, using Biss-esque logic to defend your position.

I think she talks about Zero because she feels that she needs a fixed point for her scale. Absolute zero is degrees Celsius colder than the temperature at which water freezes. You are commenting using your WordPress.

The pain scale | Harper’s Magazine

Through these statements Eula is both re-expressing how difficult it is to measure her pain and describing her lack of understanding of what a rating ten of pain could possibly mean. Biss is also very philosophical in her wording. Leave a Reply Cancel reply Enter your comment here Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: But if so, a simple burn becomes less than painful, does it not?


I think this was a good effect that Eula Biss used; the easiest way to allow people to understand what you are talking about is too include personal experiences. Clearly, when I read something that sounds like a hard-core fact, I have no choice but to believe it. The pain scale, she is saying, is just as incomprehensible to her as the concept of infinite primes.

Buried under an avalanche of sharp rocks? Not only do her details piece together imagery, but they bring together a final image that was perhaps unexpected, one with a twist.

For example pain that might be intense for her might be very minor or even unnoticeable to her father.

The pain scale

I strive to remain liquid. The reason behind her bringing in her reputation, which is still unclear, is too make the reader think about how their pain scale would be laid out.

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By continuing to use this website, you agree to their use. She is not talking about pain that she feels she is talking about the thought of pain and how people would rate different pains compared to how she thinks pain is. Posted in Uncategorized Leave a Comment. You are commenting using your Facebook account. Show Comments 0 and Tags. The subtle humor creates moments for the reader to sit back and smile as she relays the scale with relatable experiences for every reader.

The Pain Scale — Northwestern Scholars

However, after analyzing the hhe again I think what she was trying to explain to the audience is that we cannot base our thoughts and feelings around what people say the limits are. I do agree with her theory about pain because everyone feels pain at one point in his or her life.


With eulaa pain that she is feeling, she finds it incredibly difficult to rate her pain level because of how other people would consider pain and her thoughts on people that feel a much larger scale of pain in other countries. This site uses cookies. Still, every year, the largest bjss prime is larger. These fixed points were reversed after his death… There is only one fixed point on the Kelvin scale — absolute zero.

Eula uses all of these concepts and measurements in comparison with each other in order to point out the errors of the pain scale, and relate the anguish she has experienced through being forced to use it throughout her own life. Post was not sent – check your email addresses!


Biss is hysterical, yet serious as she makes this story relatable to the reader, and her subtlety is key within her humor. But she does not make it entirely personal; she describes herself as an average person, she has nothing distinct about her.

As preluded in sections one and two—more so in two, but that buss because two comes after one—Biss tends to question the reader as she goes up and down the scale.