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Recovered, Not Cured: A Journey Through Schizophrenia

Overview


This very personal exploration of schizophrenia explores each stage, from the early signs and reactions from friends and family to seeking help and the challenges of recovery. McLean bravely shares his paranoid delusions and offers both a verbal and a visual experience by including digital artwork he created to help objectify and control his impulses and fears. As McLean relates his experiences step by step, issues of sexuality, identity, and drug abuse are discussed, along with the overarching issues relating ...
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Overview


This very personal exploration of schizophrenia explores each stage, from the early signs and reactions from friends and family to seeking help and the challenges of recovery. McLean bravely shares his paranoid delusions and offers both a verbal and a visual experience by including digital artwork he created to help objectify and control his impulses and fears. As McLean relates his experiences step by step, issues of sexuality, identity, and drug abuse are discussed, along with the overarching issues relating to mental health and the medical profession. Messages from online posters who either have suffered from mental illness or have cared for the mentally ill are included throughout, adding more perspectives to the author's personal experiences. This powerful combination of words and pictures provides a unique and poignant insight into a hidden, internal world.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"This is a powerful, quirky and important book. . . . It outstrips anything else I have read about schizophrenia for its insight into the nature of psychotic thinking and behaviour." —Anne Deveson, author, Tell Me I'm Here
Library Journal
McLean is one of the lucky: he journeyed through schizophrenia and survived relatively unscathed. This isn't to say that he didn't experience harrowing times, as voices relentlessly reprimanded him and secret messages defied his interpretive abilities. Nonetheless, with the patient, loving support of family and friends, this gifted Australian graphic artist and writer managed to get psychiatric help and, most significantly, gain access to the drugs that allow him to function without psychosis. Not only does he provide an insider's view of how it feels to be "crazy," but he also supplies numerous graphic illustrations, which mirror his psychological state at different periods. In the tradition of Joanne Greenberg's I Never Promised You a Rose Garden and Susanna Kaysen's Girl, Interrupted, this is recommended for large public libraries. Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Recovered schizophrenic McLean offers a guided tour, complete with images, through the workings of his brain from the onset of his illness to the present day. McLean was a fairly ordinary, albeit artistic, teenager. His friends smoked pot and so did he. They played in bands and later attended university, and so did McLean. But while his friends could use hallucinogenic drugs and then be back to normal the next day, McLean never really left that strange mind-state behind. After graduating, he began growing more and more paranoid, and after an unsuccessful stint living in a bachelor pad with a whole gang of young men, he moved back home with his parents and landed a distinctly mundane job in a warehouse. The ordinariness of his daily life, however, did nothing to mitigate his ever-growing delusions. He would hear the PA system addressing him, read implications and intentionality into every passing license plate, and imagine that there was a giant conspiracy aimed at making him harm himself. McLean's style is uncompromisingly direct and matter-of-fact, with a wealth of detail that opens up the world of a schizophrenic's thoughts without romanticizing the experience. His extensive collections of drawings add another dimension to his tale; images of giant insects with electronic arms, crowds of streetlights, and landscapes composed of faces lend an intensity to his descriptions of feelings of displacement. Interspersed with the text are postings from Internet message boards for those suffering from schizophrenia. These messages from a nameless crowd do even more to underline the oddity and mystery of the disease. McLean's story of eventually finding psychiatric and pharmacological help is toldin the same flat tone as the rest of his story; one day he'd had enough of hearing voices and looked up psychologists in the phone book. A brave, adamantly anti-sensational tale.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781865089744
  • Publisher: Allen & Unwin Pty., Limited
  • Publication date: 5/28/2005
  • Pages: 192
  • Sales rank: 682,168
  • Product dimensions: 5.00 (w) x 7.75 (h) x 0.46 (d)

Meet the Author


Richard McLean suffers from schizophrenia. He is a graphic artist and illustrator for The Age.
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