sealPurdue News

April 17, 2003

Leading mental health researcher, advocate to speak at Purdue

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – An internationally known expert and author in mood disorders will speak at Purdue University on May 1 about her own personal struggle with manic-depressive disorder.

Kay Redfield Jamison

Kay Redfield Jamison's lecture, "Personal and Professional Reflections on Mental Illness," will begin at 6:30 p.m. in the Class of 1950 Lecture Hall, Room 224. Jamison will answer questions after her talk and host a book signing outside the lecture hall. The talk is free and open to the public.

"Not only is Kay Jamison a leader and pioneer in the mental health field, but her own struggle to live with a manic-depressive illness is compelling," said Richard Borgens, Mari Hulman George Professor of Applied Neurology in Purdue's School of Veterinary Medicine. "Her testimony as a patient and researcher has made her a trusted spokesperson for millions of people with mental illness."

Jamison's presentation is part of the Mari Hulman George Lectures in Biology and Medicine, which is hosted by Purdue's Institute for Applied Neurology and Center for Paralysis Research.

Jamison, professor of psychiatry at John Hopkins University School of Medicine, is the author of two New York Times bestsellers — "An Unquiet Mind" and "Night Falls Fast: Understanding Suicide." Her book "Touched with Fire: Manic-Depressive Illness and the Artistic Temperament," offers evidence that most artistic geniuses are manic-depressives. Her next book, "Exuberance: The Vital Emotion," will be released this year. She also is co-author of the standard medical text on manic-depressive illness.

She has been chosen by Time magazine as a Hero of Medicine and was selected as one of five individuals for the public television series "Great Minds of Medicine." Jamison has testified before Congress as a mental health advocate. There is a movie in the works about her life story.

All three of Jamison's books will be available for purchase during the book signing.

Writer: Amy Patterson-Neubert, (765) 494-9723,

Sources: Richard Borgens, (765) 494-7600,

Elizabeth Shakespeare, media coordinator at Royce Carlton, at (212) 355-7700, ext. 5124 or

Purdue News Service: (765) 494-2096;

Related Web site:
Kay Redfield Jamison's biography

NOTE TO JOURNALISTS: Phone interviews can be arranged with Jamison by contacting Elizabeth Shakespeare, media coordinator at Royce Carlton, at (212) 355-7700 Ext. 5124 or Photography and videography is not permitted during the lecture. Photos and video can be shot during Jamison's book signing following the lecture.

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