Discussion of A First-Rate Madness: Uncovering the Links Between Leadership and Mental Illness, by Nassir Ghaemi. An investigation into the surprisingly deep correlation between mental illness and successful leadership, as seen through the lives of some of the most important political figures in history.
Nassir Ghaemi, director of the Mood Disorders Program at Tufts Medical Center, offers a myth-shattering exploration of the powerful connections between mood illnesses (depression and bipolar disorder) and leadership. He sets forth a controversial, compelling thesis: the very qualities that mark those with mood disorders—creativity, resilience, empathy, and realism—also make for the best leaders in times of crisis. He discusses the importance of the “depressive realism” and creativity of mentally ill or mentally abnormal figures such as Abraham Lincoln, Franklin D. Roosevelt, and Martin Luther King, Jr. A First-Rate Madness overturns many of our most cherished perceptions about greatness and the mind.
This discussion will be held upstairs in the library.