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While not rare, films that do represent diabetes must work around the disease’s banal invisibility,and images of diabetics in film are thus especially susceptible to metaphor and exaggeration.This essay is the first to outline a diabetic filmography, discussing medical and cinematic strategies for visualizing the disease as well as how the illness informs family plots and heroic characters in horror films. Doing so, it participates in a larger discussion of the manner in which film images of ill or disabled groups sustain notions of “normalcy” by both representing and denying otherness.


This is the author's accepted manuscript of: Ferguson, Kevin L. "The Cinema of Control: On Diabetic Excess and Illness in Film." Journal of Medical Humanities, vol. 31, no. 3, 2010, pp. 183-204.

The final publication is available at Springer via :



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