Join us for a book talk with Kay Redfield Jamison, who will discuss her recent book, Fires in the Dark: Healing the Unquiet Mind. A conversation with doctor and writer Ben Martin will follow. This in-person event will be free and open to the public. We recommend arriving early for the best seating.
About the Book: The acclaimed author of An Unquiet Mind considers the age-old quest for relief from psychological pain and the role of the exceptional healer in the journey back to health.
“To treat, even to cure, is not always to heal.” In this expansive cultural history of the treatment and healing of mental suffering, Kay Jamison writes about psychotherapy, what makes a great healer, and the role of imagination and memory in regenerating the mind. From the trauma of the battlefields of the twentieth century, to those who are grieving, depressed, or with otherwise unquiet minds, to her own experience with bipolar illness, Jamison demonstrates how remarkable psychotherapy and other treatments can be when done well.
She argues that not only patients but also doctors must be healed. She draws on the example of W. H. R. Rivers, the renowned psychiatrist who treated poet Siegfried Sassoon and other World War I soldiers, and discusses the long history of physical treatments for mental illness, as well as the ancient and modern importance of religion, ritual, and myth in healing the mind. She looks at the vital role of artists and writers, as well as exemplary figures, such as Paul Robeson, who have helped to heal us as a people.
Fires in the Dark is a beautiful meditation on the quest and adventure of healing the mind, on the power of accompaniment, and the necessity for knowledge.
About the Author: Kay Redfield Jamison is the Dalio Professor in Mood Disorders and a professor of psychiatry at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, as well as an honorary professor of English at the University of St. Andrews in Scotland. She is the coauthor of the standard medical text on bipolar disorder and author of An Unquiet Mind, Night Falls Fast, Exuberance, and Touched with Fire. Her most recent book, Robert Lowell: Setting the River on Fire, was a Pulitzer Prize finalist. Dr. Jamison is a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and of the Royal Society of Edinburgh. She is a recipient of the Lewis Thomas Prize, the Sarnat Prize from the National Academy of Medicine, and a John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Fellowship.
About the Moderator: Ben Martin is an academic hospitalist and assistant director of Programs in Health Humanities at the Center for Health Humanities and Ethics at UVA School of Medicine. His research interests focus on the intersection of fiction and clinical medicine. He studied English and American literature at Middlebury College and was awarded the Donald E. Axinn Prize for his creative thesis. His writing has most recently appeared on Literary Hub.
To order Fires in the Dark, please see below for the New Dominion Bookshop book order form or call the shop at 434-295-2552.
"Jamison is a beautiful writer with a vast store of knowledge....Her book contains a blueprint for finding a way out of darkness—a great gift for anyone who sometimes struggles to overcome psychic pain."
—The Washington Post
New Dominion Bookshop Book Order Form
Shop local and support your community bookstore! Order books from New Dominion Bookshop by filling out the contact form below. Please make sure that you list the book title(s) that you would like to order. We will give you a call when your order is ready. There is no need to pre-pay. We will collect your payment when you pick up your order or when your order is shipped. If you would like your book(s) to be signed and/or inscribed, please include that information in the “Message for Our Booksellers” field.
Kay Redfield Jamison Photo Credit: Thomas Traill