Books About Issues in Mental Health 

Amador, X.  I am not sick.  I don’t need help! Helping the seriously mentally ill accept treatment.  Peconic, NY: Vida Press, 2000.
 This book addresses the difficult issue of delivery of mental health services to seriously mentally ill individuals who may resist or not see the need for such treatment.  It offers straightforward, common-sense strategies for engaging individuals in their treatment rather than imposing treatment on them.  It is based both upon the personal experiences of the author as a sibling of someone diagnosed with schizophrenia and his expertise as a leading researcher on the issue of insight and awareness.
Crisp. Every family in the land:Understanding prejudice & discrimination against people w/ mental illnesses. Society of Medicine,2004.

This book, which was produced as part of the “Changing Minds” campaign, contains 90 articles related to the experience of mental illness, including personal perspectives of people living with psychiatric disorders, chapters on stigmatization, creativity and mental disorder, law and mental illness, and spirituality and mental illness.  It also contains descriptions of campaigns intended to reduce discrimination and stigma, including the “Changing Minds” campaign.


Fink, Paul & Tasman, Alan (Editors). Stigma and Mental Illness. Washington, D.C.: American Psychiatric Press, 1992.

Grob, G.N. (1994). The Mad Among Us: A History of the Care of America's Mentally Ill. New York: The Free Press.
Jamison, Kay Redfield.  Night Falls Fast: Understanding Suicide.  New York: Random House, 1999.

        Kay Jamison, author of the national bestseller, An Unquiet Mind: A Memoir of Moods and
        Madness, examines the phenomenon of suicide.  Dr. Jamison uses both data and powerful
        examples to convincingly demonstrate how suicide represents the preventable loss of thousands of
        lives each year.  She discusses factors--biological, psychiatric, and sociocultural--that contribute to
        suicide and points out the remarkable lack of attention currently given to this common killer.

Jamison, Kay Redfield. Touched with Fire: Manic-Depressive Illness & the Artistic Temperament. Simon & Schuster, 1993.

        The author of a best-selling account of her own manic-depressive illness and co-author of a
        well-respected medical text on the illness, Dr. Jamison tackles the question of the possible
        relationship between manic-depressive illness and artistic creativity.  She provides both reviews of
        the research and theoretical literature on this topic and examples of numerous well-known artists
        with apparent manic-depressive tendencies.

Johnson, Ann Braden. Out of Bedlam: The Truth About Deinstitutionalization. New York: Harper Collins, 1990.

Kelley, J.L. Psychiatric Malpractice: Stories of Patients, Psychiatrists, & the Law. N.J.: Rutgers University Press, 1996.
Leff, J. & Warner, R. (2006). Social Inclusion of People with Mental Illness. New York: Cambridge University Press.
Marsh, D.T. & Dickens, R.M. (1997). Troubled Journey: Coming to Terms with the Mental Illness of a Parent or Sibling. New York: Penguin Putnam, Inc.

Pouissant & Alexander Lay My Burden Down:Unraveling Suicide&Mental Health Crisis Among African-Americans. Beacon

This book is unique in its focus on the neglected mental health needs of one particular group--African-Americans.  The authors of this book, for example, note the dramatic, but unattended, increase in suicide among African-Americans in this country and suggest that high incidences of substance abuse, crime, and HIV among African-Americans can be seen as manifestations of suicidal/self-destructive tendencies.  The authors explore broadly how the current mental health system has inadequately identified and responded to the mental health needs of African-Americans, and they identify ways that care can be improved.


Torrey, E. Fuller. Out of the Shadows: Confronting America's Mental Illness Crisis. New York: John Wiley & Sons, 1997.

Wahl,O. F. Telling Is Risky Business: Mental Health Consumers Confront Stigma. NJ: Rutgers University, 1999.
Whitaker, R. (2002). Mad in America. New York: Basic Books.