A Brief History of Anxiety

A Brief History of Anxiety

Yours & Mine

Book - 2008
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Patricia Pearson returns to non-fiction with a witty, insightful and highly personal look at recognizing and coping with fears and anxieties in our contemporary world. The millions of North Americans who silently cope with anxiety at last have a witty, articulate champion in Patricia Pearson, who shows that the anxious are hardly nervous nellies with weak characters who just need medicine and a pat on the head. Instead, Pearson questions what it is about today's culture that is making people anxious, and offers some surprising answers-as well as some inspiring solutions based on her own fierce battle to drive the beast away. Drawing on personal episodes of incapacitating dread as a vivid, often hilarious guide to her quest to understand this most ancient of human emotions, Pearson delves into the history and geography of anxiety. Why are North Americans so much more likely to suffer than Latin Americans? Why did Darwin treat hypochondria with sprays from a hose? Why have we forgotten the insights of some of our greatest philosophers, theologians and psychologists in favor of prescribing addictive drugs? In this blend of fascinating reportage and poignant memoir, Pearson ends with her struggle to withdraw from antidepressants and to find more self-aware and philosophically-grounded ways to strengthen the soul.
Publisher: [Toronto] : Random House Canada, 2008.
ISBN: 9780679314981
Characteristics: vii, 198 pages ;,22 cm.


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Apr 26, 2019

The book is interesting and she is clearly a good writer, but it doesnt really go anywhere. About a 4hour read. I wish it had been longer and more complete. Worth the read but unlikely memorable.

ontherideau May 14, 2015

I was laughing by page 2, by the end I was aghast at operating procedures of big pharma and doctors in pushing psychotic drugs to troubled souls. Scorn is heaped on divine faith and natural healing methods but there is something wrong when antidepressants list heightened risk of suicide as a side effect.

WVMLStaffPicks Feb 01, 2015

Pearson traces her anxiety back to her university days. In this account she weaves personal experience with what she has learned about anxiety and its treatment in our society and others. I found it so honest, insightful and witty I couldn't put it down.

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