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“Manufacturing Depression”

Manufacturing Depression: The Secret History of a Modern DiseaseAt a time when millions of Americans are on some sort of antidepressant, Gary Greenberg’s book is likely to hit home for many of its readers. Greenberg, a practicing psychologist, argues that depression is the pharmaceutical industry’s name for a natural human state: unhappiness. The Observer calls “Manufacturing Depression” “a thorough, often shocking history of how the pharmaceutical industry has pathologised misery in order to sell us the cure.” Louis Menand, writing for The New Yorker, says that Greenberg “is an unusually eloquent writer, and his book offers a grand tour of the history of modern medicine, as well as an up-close look at contemporary practices, including clinical drug trials, cognitive-behavioral therapy, and brain imaging.” A mixture of personal accounts, history, and case histories, the book is “more than a dizzying, dazzling critique of the biomedical disease model of depression,” says Psychology Today. In fact, the review concludes, “It is probably the most thoughtful book on depression ever written for a lay audience.”

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