Friday, December 31, 2010

Person of the Year

Robert Whitaker, hands down.

I'm rushing today, so am taking the lazy way out and reprinting a review from Amazon about his 2010 book, Anatomy of an Epidemic; Magic Bullets, Psychiatric Drugs, and the Astonishing Rise of Mental Illness in America.

Impeccably researched and documented, Whitaker's book is based on long-term outcome studies that have received almost no publicity from psychiatry and other guardians of the psychiatric establishment, including, of course, the pharmaceutical companies that keep churning out new generations of magic bullets. It's a multibillion dollar industry with a lot to lose were the full truth about the drug risks disclosed and understood.

While far from an anti-psychiatry or anti-drug polemic, Whitaker's interviews with patients who are on psychiatric medications are nonetheless heartrending. Also revealing is his disclosure of the brutal treatment meted out to maverick doctors like Peter Breggin, David Healy and Loren Mosher, who all questioned the efficacy of pharmaceutical treatment of mental disorders, from schizophrenia to bipolar disorder and other maladies. Harvard Medical School-trained Breggin was in effect blacklisted. Mosher lost his position with the NIMH over his successful drug-free treatment of patients through the Soteria project he founded. And Healy promptly lost a job offer after publicizing his criticism of SSRIs and their possible relation to suicide.

Happy New Year!


  1. Hi Rossa,

    I wanted to check in and say hi, and also wish you happiness in the coming year. I was thinking about the book you suggested. Then I saw this post --this book looks like a must read too.

    Happy New Year to you!

  2. I agree! I read a lot of his book this summer, which was a very fruitful one as I was with my Dad and had some free time to go to the public library, emptying their shelves of these kinds of book, learning a lot about psych meds and a bit less about alternatives to psych meds. But the journey continues - for myself (coping) and my dad. And I've learned a ton from this blog, too.

    Happy New Year!

  3. Rossa,

    Robert Whitaker.
    Person of the Year?

    You got that right !!!



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