Audio Books by Susannah Cahalan

Susannah Cahalan is the author of The Great Pretender (2020) and Brain On Fire: My Month of Madness (2012).

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The Great Pretender

release date: Jan 02, 2020
The Great Pretender
''Destined to become a popular and important book'' Jon Ronson ''Fascinating'' Sunday Times In the early 1970s, Stanford professor Dr Rosenhan conducted an experiment, sending sane patients into psychiatric wards; the result of which was a damning paper about psychiatric practises. The ripple effects of this paper helped bring the field of psychiatry to its knees, closing down institutions and changing mental health diagnosis forever. But what if that ground-breaking and now-famous experiment was itself deeply flawed? And what does that mean for our understanding of mental illness today? These are the questions Susannah Cahalan asks in her completely engrossing investigation into this staggering case, where nothing is quite as it seems.

Brain On Fire: My Month of Madness

release date: Nov 13, 2012
Brain On Fire: My Month of Madness
''My first serious blackout marked the line between sanity and insanity. Though I would have moments of lucidity over the coming days and weeks, I would never again be the same person ...'' Susannah Cahalan was a happy, clever, healthy twenty-four-year old. Then one day she woke up in hospital, with no memory of what had happened or how she had got there. Within weeks, she would be transformed into someone unrecognizable, descending into a state of acute psychosis, undergoing rages and convulsions, hallucinating that her father had murdered his wife; that she could control time with her mind. Everything she had taken for granted about her life, and who she was, was wiped out. Brain on Fire is Susannah''s story of her terrifying descent into madness and the desperate hunt for a diagnosis, as, after dozens of tests and scans, baffled doctors concluded she should be confined in a psychiatric ward. It is also the story of how one brilliant man, Syria-born Dr Najar, finally proved - using a simple pen and paper - that Susannah''s psychotic behaviour was caused by a rare autoimmune disease attacking her brain. His diagnosis of this little-known condition, thought to have been the real cause of devil-possessions through history, saved her life, and possibly the lives of many others. Cahalan takes readers inside this newly-discovered disease through the progress of her own harrowing journey, piecing it together using memories, journals, hospital videos and records. Written with passionate honesty and intelligence, Brain on Fire is a searingly personal yet universal book, which asks what happens when your identity is suddenly destroyed, and how you get it back. ''With eagle-eye precision and brutal honesty, Susannah Cahalan turns her journalistic gaze on herself as she bravely looks back on one of the most harrowing and unimaginable experiences one could ever face: the loss of mind, body and self. Brain on Fire is a mesmerizing story'' -Mira Bartók, New York Times bestselling author of The Memory Palace Susannah Cahalan is a reporter on the New York Post, and the recipient of the 2010 Silurian Award of Excellence in Journalism for Feature Writing. Her writing has also appeared in the New York Times, and is frequently picked up by the Daily Mail, Gawker, Gothamist, AOL and Yahoo among other news aggregrator sites.


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