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The New Black: Mourning, Melancholia and Depression [Paperback]

Darian Leader
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
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Book Description

29 Jan 2009

The New Black is Darian Leader's compassionate and illuminating exploration of melancholy

What happens when we lose someone we love? A death, a separation or the break-up of a relationship are some of the hardest times we have to live through. We may fall into a nightmare of depression, lose the will to live and see no hope for the future. What matters at this crucial point is whether or not we are able to mourn.

In this important and groundbreaking book, acclaimed psychoanalyst and writer Darian Leader urges us to look beyond the catch-all concept of depression to explore the deeper, unconscious ways in which we respond to the experience of loss. In so doing, we can loosen the grip it may have upon our lives.

'His orthodox, psychoanalytical approach, produces an unpredictable, occasionally brilliant book. The New Black is a mixture of Freudian text, clinical assessments and Leader's own brand of gentle wisdom' Herald

'Compelling and important . . . an engrossing and wise book' Hanif Kureishi

'There are many self-help books on the market . . . The New Black is a book that might actually help' Independent

Darian Leader is a psychoanalyst practising in London and a member of the Centre for Freudian Analysis and Research and of the College of Psychoanalysts - UK. He is the author of The New Black, Strictly Bipolar, Why do women write more letters than they post?, Promises lovers make when it gets late, Freud's Footnotes and Stealing the Mona Lisa, and co-author, with David Corfield, of Why Do People Get Ill? He is Honorary Visiting Professor in the School of Human and Life Sciences, Roehampton University.


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Product details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin (29 Jan 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0141021225
  • ISBN-13: 978-0141021225
  • Product Dimensions: 12.8 x 19.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 57,010 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Review

Compelling and important . . . An engrossing and wise book (Hanif Kureishi)

Rigorous and engaging . . . a rich, cogently argued and very timely book (Irish Times Weekend Review)

His orthodox, psychoanalytical approach, produces an unpredictable, occasionally brilliant book. The New Black is a mixture of Freudian text, clinical assessments and Leader's own brand of gentle wisdom (Herald)

Book Description

A beautifully written, essential exploration of depression, mourning and loss --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
58 of 64 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Perhaps a Masterpiece 28 Feb 2008
Format:Hardcover
This is a comprehensive, poetic and beautifully written account of how loss affects us and and what the job of mourning entails. Drawing on clinical findings, popular culture and the literature of grief, Leader's investigation into this subject is always sensitive and intelligent and often startling. His insights and wisdom both delight and console.
On a personal level I have been thinking about my own losses for the best part of my life, yet Leader's book made me see important parallels and distinctions that would never otherwise have occurred to me.
This book not only revives important and neglected dialogues, reinforcing and reinterpreting Freud's famous treatise on this subject, it actually makes you feel better! The New Black is a book that needed to be written, for in the prevalent culture, I believe, we feel even more uncertain about how to position ourselves in relation to our losses than ever before. This is a distinguished work, and a lovely one, which people will be reading for many many years to come.
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21 of 23 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars a welcome sophisticated approach to depression 17 Jan 2010
Format:Paperback
Darian Leader has produced a book on depression that complicates and refreshes ideas on depression and mourning by reinvigorating older psychoanalytic theories and thinking on depression and introduces the reader to continental psychoanalytic thought that explores some of complexities apparent in the subjective experience of depression. The rhetoric against the current politics of NHS psychotherapies and the critique of CBT for depression is less convincing, primarily because his understanding of CBT is simplistic, which is why i did not give this book 5 out of 5. This does not take away from the value of this book which deserves to be read and perhaps will serve to shake down clinicians, theorists and therapists of any persuasion or affilation of the predominating influence of anglo-american 'positivist-empiricism'and its hold on the current 'language'and understanding of depression. A compassionate, thought-provoking book.
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33 of 37 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Thank you very much, Darian Leader 27 May 2008
Format:Hardcover
I've never typed a review on Amazon before but I have to give my support to this book. It is so important. Death and loss are around us every day and yet their existence is denied. In this book Darian Leader writes clearly, intelligently, concisely and thoughtfully about loss and about the process of grieving. This book explained so many things to me that I could never have worked out for myself. It may not be designed as a self help book but it is a book which does help. If people listend to Darian Leader we would have very much less depression and unhappiness in our society. Yes, you should definitely read this book. I'm about to read it for a second time because there is so much in it that I couldn't take it all in the first time around.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars One to come back to 6 Jan 2010
By JohnnyP
Format:Paperback
This is a book that makes more and more sense to me as I get older and experience loss both for myself and that of others. On first reading I was sceptical about some of the importance attached to loss and grief in the book, but in the couple of years since I have come back to it on several occassions and have developed a much greater respect for its key arguments. For anyone in a family that has been affected by grief there are likely to be some answers and helpful pointers in explaining the thoughts and behaviours of you and those around you. A really thought provoking read.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Interesting 6 Feb 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This book is very interesting and helps explore a range of ideas, in a simplistic way. Useful for dissertation work or even as a personal read.
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12 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars NHS psychotherapist 2 May 2009
By Porlock
Format:Paperback
I greatly enjoyed this book. What is most outstanding us how Darian Leader brings very complex ideas alive through examples from his clinic. A welcome anecdote to the simplistic ideas that often predominate depression discourse in such times.
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best book ever! 9 Aug 2009
Format:Paperback
Mourning, melancholia and depression are words which are thrown around in society every day but very few people actually know the diferences between them. Darian LEADER describes every point from every angle possible, on mourning, melancholia and depression. He includes example from art, greek mythology, architecture and anthropologists to high light points he is making whilst showing that psychology is everywhere. he argues everypoint he makes or finds, and he does so in a way that will leave you speechless. Darian Leader is an amazing writer, and brings life to a subject which is morbid in nature. This was the first book of his i have read and will certanly NOT be the last!
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