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An Unquiet Mind: A Memoir of Moods and…

An Unquiet Mind: A Memoir of Moods and Madness (edition 2009)

by Kay Redfield Jamison

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2,509292,418 (3.93)51
Title:An Unquiet Mind: A Memoir of Moods and Madness
Authors:Kay Redfield Jamison
Info:Vintage (2009), Edition: 1, Kindle Edition, 219 pages
Collections:Your library, Kindle, memoirs, Read in 2013
Tags:autobiography, bipolar disorder, depression, health, mania, manic depression, medical, medicine, memoirs, mental disorders, mental health, mental illness, moods, non-fiction, psychiatry, psychology, suicide, clinicians, relationships, families, UCLA, Johns Hopkins

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An Unquiet Mind: A Memoir of Moods and Madness by Kay Redfield Jamison

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English (28)  German (1)  All languages (29)
Showing 1-5 of 28 (next | show all)
Psychiatrist Kay Jamison details the mind of a manic/depressive patient from the concurrent lenses of patient and practitioner. Informative, compassionate, insightful. How to translate this book to the classroom? Biology, pharmacology? I would love to have highschool students be able to pinpoint the pathology and possibly the pharmacological mechanism of lithium.

This book simultaneously humanizes and medicalizes bipolar disorder, and in my opinion needed to be written in order to keep destigmatizing mental illness ( )
  Desirichter | Jul 14, 2014 |
Clinical, yet easy enough for the layman to understand. Goes through both the experiences of the trained and obviously very intelligent psychatrist(logist? Can't remember) who is dealing with bi-polar, otherwise known as manic-depressive disorder. Fascinating, but I think it might be especially helpful for individuals with the disorder, or people who have family members with the disorder, as in my case. A great read. ( )
  steadfastreader | Mar 18, 2014 |
a popular book re bipolar. Julie Evans Birmingham and Solihull Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust.
  RCPsychLibrary | Jan 27, 2014 |
I had a very hard time with this book. It was a mix between a very dry birth of clinical mental health studies and a very vague, pretentious personal story.

The first few chapters were very promising, I felt there was passion infused in the pages as she spoke about her father, her military upbringing, her mother..her general early life. But as the story continued forward, it became more disjointed, dried out and read as if she used a thesaurus on every word humanly possible. It was overkill.

I admire Ms. Jamison for the strong, obviously intelligent psychologist that she is and for the great studies and growth she has brought to her field. On a personal level, I do not feel that her story was as honest and clear as it could've been. I didn't connect with her struggle, as it wasn't descriptive or deep.

It reads more as a clinical study and I would recommend this book only to those studying the field; not to the typical memoir lover. ( )
1 vote tealightful | Sep 24, 2013 |
A cathartic and expressive memoir by someone who has dealt with bipolar disorder. The all-consuming, tireless highs struggle with the dark, depressive, sickly lows. An excellent means of understanding this mental turmoil, how one can achieve the most stunning of successes, while grappling with the base desire to stay alive. ( )
  HadriantheBlind | Mar 30, 2013 |
Showing 1-5 of 28 (next | show all)
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I doubt sometimes whether
a quiet & unagitated life
would have suited me–yet I
sometimes long for it.
For my mother, Dell Temple Jamison
Who gave me life not once, but countless times
First words
When it's two o'clock in the morning, and you're manic, even the UCLA Medical Center has a certain appeal. (Prologue)
I was standing with my head back, one pigtail caught between my teeth, listening to the jet overhead.
"Moods are such an essential part of the substance of life, of one's notion of oneself, that even psychotic extremes in mood and behavior can somehow be seen as temporary, even understandable, reactions to what life has dealt."
"It took me far too long to realize that lost years and relationships cannot be recovered, that damage done to oneself and others cannot always be put right again, and that freedom from the control imposed by medication loses its meaning when the only alternatives are death and insanity."
"If we got rid of all the manic-depressives on the medical school faculty, not only would we have a much smaller faculty, it would also be a far more boring one." (chairman of the Department of Psychiatry at Johns Hopkins Hospital)
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Wikipedia in English (4)

Book description
In her memoir, Unquiet Mind, Jamison tells of her battle with the illness: the joy of the manic highs, which gave her an omnipotent feeling of cosmic connectedness, and the terrifying depressions, when she wanted only to die. An Unquiet Mind tells of how Jamison used her zeal and intensity, and her impressive intellectual gfts, to bring the complexities of manic-depressive illness to the world's attention. Her work has helped save countless lives.
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0679763309, Paperback)

In Touched with Fire, Kay Redfield Jamison, a psychiatrist, turned a mirror on the creativity so often associated with mental illness. In this book she turns that mirror on herself. With breathtaking honesty she tells of her own manic depression, the bitter costs of her illness, and its paradoxical benefits: "There is a particular kind of pain, elation, loneliness and terror involved in this kind of madness.... It will never end, for madness carves its own reality." This is one of the best scientific autobiographies ever written, a combination of clarity, truth, and insight into human character. "We are all, as Byron put it, differently organized," Jamison writes. "We each move within the restraints of our temperament and live up only partially to its possibilities." Jamison's ability to live fully within her limitations is an inspiration to her fellow mortals, whatever our particular burdens may be. --Mary Ellen Curtin

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:34:47 -0400)

(see all 6 descriptions)

The author recounts her own personal struggle with manic-depression and how it has shaped her life.

(summary from another edition)

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