The Eden Express Paperback – Nov 5 2002
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About the Author
After writing The Eden Express, MARK VONNEGUT went to medical school. He lives with his wife and two children in Milton, Mass., where he is a full-time practicing pediatrician.
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Top Customer Reviews
The thing about this book that makes the deepest impression on me is that even in his most wacked out, deeply scizophrenic episodes, he still gives you the impression that it's the rest of the world that's gone crazy and he's just floating along trying to keep his head above water.
The author is the son of the famous Kurt Vonnegut, which he references occasionally in his book, but it's not a predominant theme by any means. I think part of the reason for that is that his dad wasn't famous until he was almost an adult and then had this "son of a famous guy" thing cast upon him just as he was trying to strike out on his own and make his own life.
Anyhow, this is a must-read book, and is one of my favorites of all time.
I find that it remains an eloquent testimonial to the other side of schizophrenia, that side that is evidence of its adaptive role in sociobiological evolution, as a means of exploiting the physics of synchronicity, and often disguised as religious mysticism.
I have long suspected that the study of schizophrenia could benefit by taking seriously the phenomenon of synchronicity. In that some of the disorienting aspects of schizophrenia may simply be due to a lack of contet due to the west's cultural dismissal of the reality of synchronicity.
Mark Vonnegut gives us a case study of a young person who had natively intuited and systematatically explored synchronicity for some years prior to his episodes of schizophrenia. It makes me wonder - how much the onset of his illness was due to this practice of his cultivating synchronicity. And how much the debilitating nature of the illness was due to the anxiety that resulted when it manifested more and more. I wonder if in a culture that accepted and understood the phenomenon more, would he have not suffered as much?
There are so many similarities in the neurological metanoia/metamorphosis transformation of schizophrenia and mysticism, it seems so clear to me they must be very close together on the spectral distribution of human ways of being.
To the handful of readers who are interested in these aspects of consciousness, I would recommend Victor Mansfield's 'Science Synchronicity and Soul Making', and Louis Sass's 'Madness and Modernism'.
Oh well, disregarding all that metaphysical blather, Vonnegut's eloquent descriptions of the despair of modern life as seen from the eyes of a 20 year old make the book a timeless classic of cultural criticism, it seems to me. It brings to mind Jon Krakauer's story of Chris McCandless - 'Into The Wild'.
Most recent customer reviews
This is an interesting book, especially paired with Mark Vonnegut's latest, Just Like Someone With Mental Illness, But More So.
I live in B.C. Read more
I am 15 years old and I read this book for a Schizophrenia research paper. Mark Vonnegut has been my doctor in Boston all of my life. Read morePublished on Feb. 12 2003 by Shaun Brideau
I had taken several classes in psychology in college and really thought that I had a grasp of what it was like to live with schizophrenia. Not so! Read morePublished on Jan. 8 2003
This was a very personal book, written by the man who was my pediatrician for 18 yrs. He had his first psychotic experience in his 20's and describes the details in exceptional... Read morePublished on Jan. 8 2003
I read this book when I was a teenager and have been trying to find it again for several years. I picked it up at the time only because I was a Kurt Vonnegut fan back then and... Read morePublished on March 8 2000
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