The Language of Cancer

Have you considered the language of cancer? Battle metaphors abound..."the war on cancer", "survivor", "hero", "winning the battle", "conquering", "fought the heroic fight", "lost the battle" etc. Why do we use these metaphors with cancer but not with other diseases? For instance do we use the same language to describe someone living with or who has died from such chronic and life-limiting illnesses as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, heart disease, diabetes? Why the difference? Language is important and the effect on ourselves and others as we identify with certain metaphors is interesting to consider. An interesting discussion of this topic in a blog post from the Dana Farber Cancer Institute in Boston