Listening to Prozac

Narrated by: Peter D. Kramer
Length: 1 hr and 29 mins
4 out of 5 stars (49 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Since it was introduce in 1987, the antidepressant Prozac has been prescribed to nearly five million Americans. But what is Prozac? Reported to turn shy people into social butterflies and to improve work performance, memory, even dexterity, Prozac has changed millions of troubled lives - but not without raising troubling questions of interest to anyone who has ever tried to improve his or her life.

Is Prozac a medication, or a mental steroid...a cure for illness, or a chemical agent for cosmetic character change? In many cases, Prozac can make people more attractive, energetic, and socially acceptable - whether they're "ill" or not. But when a pill can appear to accomplish the work of countless therapy sessions, seminars, and self-help books and tapes, have we entered an age where pharmacological advances could make our notions of character, personality, and selfhood obsolete?

In the best-selling tradition of The Man Who Mistook His Wife for His Hat, psychiatrist Peter Kramer reads his best-selling, critically acclaimed exploration of these and other issues that sparked a national debate. Drawing on both dramatic case studies and the perceptions of a uniquely insightful thinker contemplating a cultural crossroads, Listening to Prozac will forever change the way you think of the human condition.

©1994 Peter D. Kramer (P)1994 Simon & Schuster

Critic Reviews

"For anyone considering taking antidepressants or wanting a better understanding of the effects these drugs are having on our society, Listening to Prozac is a very important book." (Amazon.com review)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

I wish it had been longer

This is an abridged version. I wished it had been longer. Great insights, very thoughtful, very interesting, I wish the entire book was available on audible

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It's only the first 2 chapters of the book!

The title sums it up. It only includes the first two chapters of book with like 10.

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caused me to question my perception of myself

I can't understand why the other reviews are negative. This book gave me so much to think about, and I didn't find the author irritating in the least. He has a clinical tone, but that's to be expected from a psychiatrist.

I recently started on an antidepressant, and found that it made me feel better than my usual self: I have more energy, fewer worries, more fantastical dreams. This caused me to wonder if I've been depressed my whole life, or if this drug was giving me superpowers. Moreover, I wondered, what is this drug taking from me? How is my personality and sense of self entangled with my anxieties? This book doesn't have all the answers, but it certainly validated my concerns and gave me more information on the topic. Dr. Kramer seems to be wondering all the same things about the ethical implications of SSRIs, which is both deeply disturbing and endlessly thought provoking.

I would listen to this book a second time through.

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A Few Tidbits of Worth

This audio version, abridged and outdated, is not worth one's time if you seriously want to learn about psycho(neuro)pharmacology and the doctor/patient experience.

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I needed Prozac after listening to this

If you're into pompous, superfluous and contrived authors, you will love this book. If I had actually been reading it, I never would have finished. Alas, I kept listening as I drove, hoping it would get better. Even sped him up a bit to no avail. Whatever points he had were completely buried in his avalanche of grandiose prose.