A revolutionary exploration of mood disorders by the author of the landmark bestseller Listening to Prozac.
A decade ago, with his breakaway bestseller, Listening to Prozac, Peter Kramer revolutionized the way we think about antidepressants and the culture in which they are so widely used. Now, he returns with a profound and original look at the condition those medications treatdepression. He asks: If we could eradicate depression so that no human being ever suffered it again, would we?
Depression, linked in our culture to a long tradition of heroic melancholy, is often understood as ennoblinga source of soulfulness and creativity. Tracing this belief from Aristotle to the Romantics to Picasso, and to present-day memoirs of mood disorder, Kramer suggests that the pervasiveness of the illness has distorted our sense of what it is to be human. There is nothing heroic about depression, Kramer argues, and he presents the latest scientific findings to support the fact that depression is a diseaseone that can have far-reaching health effects on its sufferers.
Frank and unflinching, Against Depression is a deeply felt, deeply moving book, grounded in time spent with the depressed. As his argument unfolds, Kramer becomes a crusader, the author of a compassionate polemic that is fiercely against depression and the devastation it causes.
Like Listening to Prozac, Against Depression will offer hope to millions who suffer from depressionand radically alter the debate on its treatment.
What It Is to Us
The Final Memoir
AFTER THE PUBLICATION OF Listening to Prozac,
twelve years ago, I became immersed in depression. Not my own.
I was in my forties and contented enough in the slog through
midlife. But mood disorder surrounded me, in my contacts with
and readers. Messages from parents with depressed children and
husbands with depressed wives filled my telephone answering
letters dense with personal history crammed the mail slot. In
in their particularity, these contacts were sobering,
disorienting. Less intimate overtures came my way. Reporters and talk show
wranglers approached me about the significance of drug company
initiatives, antidepressant-related lawsuits, and mental health
legislation. Colleagues invited me to join colloquia on
Advocates of partisan views of mood disorder e-mailed me with
propaganda, asking me to sign on.
Immersion has a ...
A thoughtful, sometimes controversial look at depression. However, the audio book, read by Kramer in an ironically depressing monotone, is a disappointment. No doubt Kramer is a fascinating man stuffed full with fascinating ideas but his reading style is a little dull!
(Reviewed by BookBrowse Review Team).
Full Review (548 words).
According to the prozac.com website:
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