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Whispers: The Voices of Paranoia Paperback – Bargain Price, February 9, 1996

14 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Pharmacologist Siegel brilliantly explores the mind of the paranoid in this chilling, wholly engrossing report. His 12 case studies include a cocaine-addicted ballet dancer who murders a coke dealer after developing an erotic fixation on him, an aerospace inventor who believes his enemies have launched a satellite to transmit messages into his brain, a laid-off insurance salesman-turned-God's-prophet, and a frail octogenarian convinced that her dentist has implanted a spying device in her "whispering" teeth. Siegel ( Intoxication ), a UCLA research professor of psychiatry and biobehavioral sciences, begins by analyzing Hitler's paranoid hatred of Jews, made more virulent, the author believes, by amphetamine addiction. Next we meet a paranoid neo-Nazi graduate student at UCLA, who created a crude computer program to simulate Hitler's mind. Siegel closes with a look at Ernest Hemingway's paranoid final year, which culminated with his suicide. This startling survey suggests there is a continuum of paranoia and that paranoid episodes can be triggered by drugs, thyroid disorders, pernicious anemia or psychological traumas such as false arrest, social isolation or an intensely humiliating episode.
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

From Library Journal

This book offers a compelling series of vignettes depicting experiences of paranoia. By providing an explanatory connection between his subjects' past histories, personalities, and present experiences, Siegel creates a believable setting for the dramatic events, thoughts of persecution, and feelings of panic or terror that play out in the lives of the paranoid. Many of the cases reveal drug abuse or drug intoxication at their centers. Nevertheless, each has its own merits. The author's investigation of the facts and his vivid descriptions are skillfully recorded, as is his narration of his own paranoid experience. For most general collections.
Bonnie Hoffman, Stony Brook, N.Y.
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster (February 9, 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0684802856
  • ASIN: B0046LUKKY
  • Product Dimensions: 8.4 x 5.5 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #332,665 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

15 of 16 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on August 23, 1998
Format: Paperback
I found this book sad, illuminating and fascinating. The author takes you on a journey through several different delusions and gives very good background information and, at times, links this background to the present. It is a good opportunity to more fully understand the psychotic process and delusional system that tortures many mentally ill persons. As a psychiatric nurse, it gave me a deeper understanding as to what my patients are going through.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Robert H. Pietrzak on October 28, 2001
Format: Paperback
"Whispers: The Voices of Paranoia" is hands-down one of the best books that I have ever read. Dr. Ronald Siegel, Ph.D., a forensic psychopharmacologist, is an incredible writer and an even better story-teller. His journey into the paranoid mind is enlightening, vivid, and dangerous. As Dr. Siegel unfolds each case study, the reader is thrown into the suspense, analyzing and foreshadowing the devious behavioral manifestations of the paranoid mind. I highly recommend this book to anyone interested in psychiatry, clinical neuropsychology, forensic psychology, or simply a good, non-fiction suspense trip.
You will finish this book in less than a week. I simply could not put it down and have since gone on to order all of Dr. Siegel's books.
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9 of 12 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on December 9, 1999
Format: Paperback
I bought the book whispers while casually shopping in a local bookstore earlier this year. I was at that time, in a class taught by a recent graduate in psychiatry. She made the concepts of basic human behavior interesting and challenging. As most would suspect, the mental state and motivation of people is important in law. Dr. Siegel, in his analysis of criminally insane patients, is fascinating reading for anyone. His status as a resreach scientist allowed him to closely examine patients with mental abnormalities. I could not put the book down until it was completely finished. Dr. siegel presents his cases in terms that laymen can understand. The book is concise, contains some adventure, and is somewhat humorous at times. I will read it again undoubtedly. I would reccomend this book to anyone who has a friend or relative suffering from mental disorders or substance abuse issues. I would also reccomend law enforcement officers to read the book in order to understand the condition of mentally ill people they often encounter in their daily work. I am looking for Dr. Siegel's other books. whispers was a true delight.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By D Provencher on August 18, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Truth be told, I was actually several minutes late for work this week because I could not put the book down. For people who have an interest in psychology, this book is a must read. The chapters are broken up nicely into "cases" and each case discusses not only the patient (symptoms, history) but Siegel's process for diagnosing the patient. These stories are outstanding and the book is very well written and fluid.
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7 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Brie on September 19, 2000
Format: Paperback
I just had to throw in my two cents about how much I enjoyed this book. We had to get a book to read for English class. On a whim I bought this book, and could not set it down for the life of me! It's very interesting, I learned so much. And it's wonderfully written. All in all, it's wonderful
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Philo Pray on July 22, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Hm. Everything came as said.

Although the book itself stereotypes. I'm not sure how I feel about it. Go watch Walk Away Renee for a true bio about a woman with schizophrenia. Thats a better look at this stuff.
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful By LiquidDre on June 25, 2005
Format: Paperback
This book is so exciting that it is hard to believe it is non-fiction at times. The author covers many different cases with literary mastery usually reserved for fiction writers. There are stories of Hitler's brain in a jar, crazy cokehead hallucinations, psycho killers and more. This is not your standard acedemic (read boring) case study. I read this book from cover to cover in about a week, very hard to put down. It is written for the layman, but in a way that it is excessible to anyone (including professionals in the field). I would recommend this book to anyone with even a passing interest in abnormal psychology.
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