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RECOMMENDED READING

{Last updated on May 20, 2000}


SHRINK RESISTANT: THE STRUGGLE AGAINST PSYCHIATRY IN CANADA 

Edited by Bonnie Burstow and Don Weitz. 
1988, Press Gang Publishers.

An anthology of personal stories, poetry and art from more than 
forty Canadian psychiatric survivors. 

THE LOONY-BIN TRIP 

Written by Kate Millet. 
1991, Simon and Shuster.

This excellent autobiography by one of the leaders of the women's movement reads like a first-rate thriller... and speaks a compelling truth about the 'mental health' system. 

UPSTAIRS IN THE CRAZY HOUSE 

Written by Pat Capponi. 
1992, Viking Press.

Activist and survivor Pat Capponi tells of the abusive upbringing that led to her being incarcerated in a number of institutions, and of the Toronto boarding home where she ended up... and found the strength to turn the situation around for herself and many other ex-patients.

SUNNYBROOK - A TRUE STORY WITH LIES 

Written by Persimmon Blackbridge. 
1996, Press Gang Publishers.

A funny and moving short novel about a former inmate who finds herself wielding the keys. Persimmon is an artist as well as a writer, and this book is richly illustrated with her work. 

ON OUR OWN: PATIENT-CONTROLLED ALTERNATIVES TO THE MENTAL HEALTH SYSTEM 

Written by Judi Chamberlain. 
1978, Hawthorne Books, Inc.

One of the bibles of the survivor movement, Judi Chamberlain's autobiography tells of the need for a model of care based on compassion and human contact, rather than the cold and bleak existence offered by institutions. 

AS FOR THE SKY, FALLING 

Written by Shelagh Lynne Supeene. 
1990, Second Story Press.

A university student tells of experiencing a spiritual crisis that led to her seeking psychiatric treatment... the shrink's viewpoint on her situation differed greatly from her own. Tells how unusual personal experiences of a spiritual nature are often pathologized by psychiatry. 

TOXIC PSYCHIATRY 

Written by Peter Breggin, MD.
1992, St. Martin's Press.

Dissident psychiatrist Breggin speaks on how love and compassion must replace the biopsychiatric model of incarceration, drugs and shock... and provides compelling statistics to support his words. 

STILL RAISING HELL
Poverty, Activism and Other True Stories

Written by Sheila Baxter.
1997, Press Gang Publishers.

British-born  author Sheila Baxter tells of more than thirty years of activism and community building in the Canadian cities of Montreal and Vancouver. This highly personal work is one of the finest anti-poverty testimonials to have been written in a long time. Well worth reading.

PROZAC HIGHWAY
Written by Persimmon Blackbridge.
1997, Press Gang Publishers.

Persimmon's hilarious second novel explores the interractions among a bunch of psych. survivors on a fictional Internet mailing list called 'Thisiscrazy.' Inspired by the community of special people who make up the  Madness  family.


CALL ME CRAZY
Stories from the Mad Movement

Written by Irit Shimrat.
1997, Press Gang Publishers.

Former Phoenix Rising editor  Irit Shimrat  has assembled a splendid collection of interviews with Canadian survivors who have made a truly radical move and stopped being 'mental patients.' 


REMEMBRANCE OF PATIENTS PAST
Patient Life in the Toronto Hospital for the Insane  1870-1940

Written by Geoffrey Reaume, Ph.D
2000, Oxford University Press.

Playwright and historian Geoffrey Reaume has utilized research  he conducted for his Ph.D thesis in order to compile this stunning, detail-rich account  of life in a large Canadian mental institution, from the perspective  of those who actually lived behind the walls. Was also the inspiration for the play   'Angels of 999 Queen Street West.' 

THIS BIBLIOGRAPHY WILL BE UPDATED AND ADDED TO FROM TIME TO TIME.