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The Book of Woe: The DSM and the Unmaking of Psychiatry MP3 CD – Audiobook, MP3 Audio, Unabridged
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From Publishers Weekly
Greenberg delivers a detailed and critical account of the history of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM), the go-to resource for psychiatrists and other professionals in the mental health field. In particular, the author identifies the various problems, shortcomings, and questionable motivations (such as the overwhelming influence of the pharmaceutical industry) that have plagued the DSM up through its most recent edition. Throughout the book, Greenberg draws upon interviews and research within the field of psychiatry and beyond to make a comprehensive case that will have many raising an eyebrow at psychiatric diagnoses. Narrator David Drummond's deep—almost foreboding—voice matches up well with Greenberg's prose. And Drummond's tone, timing, and emphasis help clarify points for listeners and keep them engaged during the more information-heavy sections of text. A Blue Rider hardcover. (May) --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
"A compelling insider's challenge to psychiatry's scientific pretensions and a plea to return it to its humanistic roots." ---Publishers Weekly Starred Reviews
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Faced with this book, one question that a general reader may ask is, why should I care to know all about this insider technical grist that it is the psychiatrists' job to grind and refine?
My reaction to The Book of Woe is philosophical and sociological, and my appraisal overall is mostly positive. I don't agree with every point. I emerge from reading the book with a mixed reaction of philosophical stimulus, resonance, and difference; and I come away thinking about sociological concerns, some of which the book gets at, others it sidestepped. In some places I found the narrative getting a bit self-congratulatory, cavalier, and long-winded.
Despite all that, however, the book really rocks and rolls with face-to-face interviews, participant-observation, and historical notes among psychiatric trend-setters. If it were written by a sociologist, The Book of Woe might earn praise for its piercing ethnographic portrayal of elites in a professional practice hard at work defining, adapting, and justifying a key toolkit that, by societal turn of events, has become theirs to promulgate, psychiatric standards and labels of diagnosis. People may debate the consequences, but in some greater or lesser measure, Greenberg argues that psychiatric diagnosis does influence peoples' identities and connects to insurance payments, treatment regimens, legal distinctions, and research references. Whatever you may think of psychiatry, the profession does render some influence over a number of human lives. The author, Gary Greenberg, PhD, is not a sociologist but is a journalist and practicing psychotherapist. And The Book of Woe's publication is well timed to coincide with the release of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5(TM)), surely enhancing the book's contribution to the public discourse.
The Book of Woe describes and provokes on a topic that is pertinent to human well-being. The prose delivers erudite arguments laced with personalities and events told as stories, serving as anecdotal data and coating the subject for easier ingestion. Greenberg's arguments may pertain to several different communities of readers who might appreciate it: general interest about public health and mental difficulties; sociology of medicine and mind; and philosophy of science, medicine, and mind. I recommend it.