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The Weariness of the Self: Diagnosing the History of Depression in the Contemporary Age

3.93  ·  Rating details ·  68 ratings  ·  5 reviews
Depression, once a subfield of neurosis, has become the most diagnosed mental disorder in the world. Why and how has depression become such a topical illness and what does it tell us about changing ideas of the individual and society? Alain Ehrenberg investigates the history of depression and depressive symptoms across twentieth-century psychiatry, showing that identifying ...more
Hardcover, 304 pages
Published December 20th 2009 by McGill-Queen's University Press (first published October 1st 1998)
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Ed
Mar 11, 2013 rated it liked it
It appears that we live in the midst of an epidemic of an illness that we call Depression. Looking back to my training as a psychiatrist in the early 1970s, the diagnosis of Depression was usually limited to states that were so disabling that a person could not work, was at risk of suicide, often needed hospitalization and was usually treated with tricyclic antidepressants or ECT. There was a diagnosis of Neurotic Depression that was milder and was always treated with psychotherapy. Our current ...more
Bruce Campbell
Apr 17, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: therapy, re-reading
Ehrenberg has the French disease of writing obscurely enough that it is fatiguing to read, particularly on the Subway going to work. I will probably enjoy it more on re-reading. Generally some great ideas about the way Neurosis and Anxiety lost to Depression in the last quarter century. I suggest beginning with the concluding chapter, which puts us here with some sense of how we got here.
Claude
Feb 15, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ça demeure un livre de sociologie, donc ce n'est pas un roman. Par contre, j'ai vraiment apprécié pouvoir mieux comprendre l'évolution de la maladie de la dépression.
Barak
Oct 02, 2012 marked it as to-read-own
People seem to be too depressed to actually read it.
Jonathan
Mar 10, 2018 rated it liked it
Smart and ambitious, but filled with highly speculative claims.
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