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Manufacturing Depression: The Secret History of a Modern Disease Paperback – February 8, 2011
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“[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." —Louis Menand, The New Yorker
“A dizzying, dazzling critique. It is probably the most thoughtful book on depression ever written." —Jonathan Rottenberg, Ph.D., Psychology Today
“Manufacturing Depression is full of fascinating stories...Greenberg's greatest contribution, though, is insisting on few certainties, and in offering himself to us." —Liz Else, New Scientist
“In a medicalized world of specious concepts where false hope has taken the form of a diagnosis and a pill, the only way to challenge current thinking is with a sledgehammer, or a copy of Manufacturing Depression. And best of all, this may be the funniest book on depression ever.” —Errol Morris, Academy Award-winning director of The Fog of War
“Greenberg[‘s] bouts of deep depressions [are] smartly conveyed here, including [his] participation in a clinical trial for an antidepressant…the author engages in extended, illuminating discussions of a host of therapeutic techniques, the confounding power of the placebo effect, the evolution of psychopharmacology and the ways in which expectations shape response. A humanistic, witty exploration of the human response to depression.” —Kirkus
“Greenberg elegantly dissects the medical-research-pharmaceutical complex….A splendid, witty analysis of how we came to give up the stories of our lives in favor of analyzing the alphabet of which the stories are made. An essential read for all invested in medicine and social science.” —Library Journal, starred review
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Top Customer Reviews
research' and challenged the old-guard establishment, calling into question the
integrity of the entire healthcare industry - but he doesn't necessarily outline
a concrete remedy for the frustrating mess. And as we all know, the American
people don't mind if you enlighten them on the problem, but you'd better
follow that up with the ANSWER.
And Greenberg doesn't do that. He nudges, he suggests, he makes inroads, takes
detours, and will occassionally outright opine, but a sure-fire ANSWER - not
But asking the questions, pointing out the gaps in reason and logic, exposing
falsehoods....that's just as important, isn't it? That at least gets us
somewhere more meaningful and substantial than the complacency spoon-fed us by
those ominous depression doctors (forget the spoon, these days it's a
Of course, Greenberg has a powerful opponent, a Goliath to his David. Just ask
those Uconn guys who did all that placebo research and ruffled many a lab coat
feather. His may not be a popular message, but it is an important one. Like a powerful movie or a rousing speech, Manufacturing Depression challenges us to reconsider long-held beliefs and erroneous thinking - because the depression doctors sure as heck aren't going to do it for us...
There's a lot of information in this book. Dr. Greenberg gets the historical details admirably right and makes the past as vivid as he can but misrepresents (or misunderstands) the purpose of statistical significance testing. This wouldn't be so bad if Dr. Greenberg were attempting to describe statistics and research methods in a neutral fashion; he is not a specialist. Unfortunately, this isn't the case. Most of his discussion about this topic is embedded in excerpts from an article he wrote a few years ago about his experiences as a patient in a clinical drug trial and it's here that his tone veers from approachable and interesting to snarky and smarmy. It's also uncomfortably narcissistic.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
you will need to do some intellectual work, but it is worth itPublished 13 months ago by Michel Olson
The premise of the book seems to be that if "they" tell you long enough that you're depressed, you will be. Then they'll sell you the cure.Published 16 months ago by MICHAEL VONPLATO
Haven't read it yet - but the book was used and looked like new. Plan to read it then give to someone in my family.Published 23 months ago by cyndie
Fascinating look into the creation of the DSM and the reverberations into how psychiatrists and society identify and treat mental "illnesses"Published on July 21, 2013 by Alan Smithee
I tend to agree with the author and his opinions, so of course I'm more receptive to his message. Still, it's hard to argue with presentation of historical fact, and I think this... Read morePublished on April 18, 2013 by Bazuro
It is well-researched, well-documented, well-written. A fascinating expose into the world of depression doctors, depression medication, and manipulation. Read morePublished on February 16, 2013 by Deborah Vanderniet
This book tackles a pretty interesting issue: whether the psychiatric/pharmaceutical/medical community has redefined the sadness and regret that is often just part of life as a... Read morePublished on January 14, 2013 by Cynesige
Finally getting to finish this book was a chore for me. I had already been taking mindfulness classes and found this book to be a cheap and unscientific rehash of Dr Jon... Read morePublished on August 21, 2012 by puccagirl73
Gary Greenberg has in "Manufacturing Depression", accomplished a phenomenal job crafting a brutal dissection of factors behind the unprecedented modern western epidemic of... Read morePublished on April 25, 2012 by Taiji Dreamer