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Lincolns Melancholy: How Depression Challenged a President and Fueled His Greatness Audiobook, by Joshua Wolf Shenk
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Lincolns Melancholy: How Depression Challenged a President and Fueled His Greatness Audiobook, by Joshua Wolf Shenk
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Author: Joshua Wolf Shenk Narrator: Derek Shetterly Publisher: HarperAudio Audio Length: Release Date: October 2021 Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download ISBN: 9798200883103

Publisher Description

Drawing on seven years of his own research and the work of other esteemed Lincoln scholars, Shenk reveals how the sixteenth president harnessed his depression to fuel his astonishing success. Lincoln found the solace and tactics he needed to deal with the nation’s worst crisis in the “coping strategies” he had developed over a lifetime of persevering through depressive episodes and personal tragedies. With empathy and authority gained from his own experience with depression, Shenk crafts a nuanced, revelatory account of Lincoln and his legacy. Based on careful, intrepid research, Lincoln’s Melancholy unveils a wholly new perspective on how our greatest president brought America through its greatest turmoil. Shenk relates Lincoln’s symptoms, including mood swings and at least two major breakdowns, and offers compelling evidence of the evolution of his disease, from “major depression” in his twenties and thirties to “chronic depression” later on. Shenk reveals the treatments Lincoln endured and his efforts to come to terms with his melancholy, including a poem he published on suicide and his unpublished writings on the value of personal—and national—suffering. By consciously shifting his goal away from personal contentment (which he realized he could not attain) and toward universal justice, Lincoln gained the strength and insight that he, and America, required to transcend profound darkness.

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Quotes

  • "Lincoln's Melancholy is an extraordinary story, for the depth of its scholarship and the lure of its style.

    - Mike Wallace, cohost of CBS's "60 Minutes""Lincoln not only coped with his depression, he harnessed it. Joshua Wolf Shenk [explains how] masterfully and memorably.

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About the Author

Joshua Wolf Shenk is an essayist and independent scholar whose work has appeared in numerous magazines and in the national bestseller Unholy Ghost: Writers on Depression. He has written for the New Yorker, Harper’s, the Atlantic, the New York Times, Mother Jones, and other publications. He has been a correspondent for the New Republic, the Economist, and U.S. News & World Report. A contributing editor to the Washington Monthly and a faculty member at New School University, Shenk serves on the advisory council of the Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial Commission and consulted on the History Channel’s film Lincoln. He lives in Brooklyn.

About the Narrator

Derek Shetterly has worked extensively as an on-air radio talent, voice-over actor, and audiobook narrator. A graduate of Southern Illinois University at Carbondale with a BA in radio and television, he lives in Oregon.