A First-Rate Madness: Uncovering the Links Between Leadership and Mental Illness

A First-Rate Madness: Uncovering the Links Between Leadership and Mental Illness

An investigation into the surprisingly deep correlation between mental illness and successful leadership, as seen through some of history's greatest politicians, generals, and businesspeople. In A First-Rate Madness, Nassir Ghaemi, who runs the Mood Disorders Program at Tufts University Medical Center, draws from the careers and personal plights of such notable leaders a An investigation into the surprisingly deep correlation between mental illness and successful leadership, as seen thr...

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Title:A First-Rate Madness: Uncovering the Links Between Leadership and Mental Illness
Author:S. Nassir Ghaemi
Rating:
Genres:Nonfiction
ISBN:A First-Rate Madness: Uncovering the Links Between Leadership and Mental Illness
ISBN
Edition Language:English
Format Type:Hardcover
Number of Pages:340 pages pages

A First-Rate Madness: Uncovering the Links Between Leadership and Mental Illness Reviews

  • David
    Oct 19, 2014
    Nassir Ghaemi describes a strong correlation between mental or mood disorders, and leadership. Many of the world's best leaders in times of crisis had mental disorders--not very severe, but sufficiently ill so that they handled challenges with more realistic outlooks than so-called "no...
  • Alisa
    Nov 05, 2013
    An engaging look at how the range of mental health affects leaders in crisis situations, with a thorough examination if existing records. One of the best books that I have read, where the author admits finding results different from his original hypotheses and weaknesses or gaps in his...
  • Stefanie
    Feb 27, 2012
    This book would have gotten three or four stars had its theme been slightly different. The author posits on p. 17, "The best crisis leaders are either mentally ill or mentally abnormal; the worst crisis leaders are mentally healthy." Had the book stuck to the specific cases, that is, s...
  • Marya
    Sep 06, 2011
    "And, isn't sanity really just a one-trick pony anyway? I mean all you get is one trick, rational thinking, but when you're good and crazy, oooh, oooh, oooh, the sky is the limit." - The Tick From his eminent philosophical standing, the Tick nicely summarizes pretty much the only po...
  • Kerry
    Jun 18, 2012
    The psych student in me was extremely excited to open this delectable treat... and it certainly didn't disappoint as by page 2 I get: "in times of crisis, we are better off being led by mentally ill leaders than by mentally normal ones". If you aren't intrigued by that then I think the...
  • Michelle Cristiani
    Nov 08, 2014
    Solid investigation of the link between mental illness and able leadership through history. I learned a lot about many historical figures I didn't know battled depression. Ghaemi makes as good a case as one could using only historical evidence. Solid conclusions, even if most of it is ...
  • Windelbo
    Sep 24, 2011
    This book was fantastic. It made me think about what it means to be a leader and what it means to be mentally ill. While the author's evidence for the mental illness of many of his historical subjects is not always entirely convincing, that doesn't end up being the point. Instead, the ...
  • Cari
    Mar 03, 2013
    The Good A First-Rate Madness has a fascinating premise: that in times of crisis, mentally abnormal leaders are more effective than mentally healthy ones. For various reasons, many of which are included in this book, I actually tend to agree with the author, and even if I didn't, hi...
  • Kendra
    Jan 04, 2012
    I really wanted to love this book, and I do have to give it a few positive mentions. I did learn some interesting historical facts and I think he had good points in the last chapter on stigma, but with that said on to the negatives. First of all, he makes several inaccurate statements,...
  • Pat
    Oct 28, 2011
    This book provides an interesting analysis of world leaders & how their mental health influenced their leadership. The author's analysis of such world figures as Lincoln, General Sherman, Hitler, FDR, Nixon, JFK and many others and how they reacted during crisis and non crisis situ...
  • Charlene
    Sep 07, 2018
    The history was captivating. I could even see myself making some of these diagnoses over sips of tea and conversation with a friend. But, the speculation and storytelling was really extreme. If you can put aside the main point, the mental health diagnoses, this is a very entertaini...
  • Steve
    Nov 12, 2011
    I found this book not only fascinating but a compelling idea. The author contends that the best leaders during times of crisis are those with a mental illness. He suggests this is the case for only certain illnesses which are severe depression, mania, bipolar disorder, and hyperthymia ...
  • Thomas Edmund
    Mar 26, 2014
    If anything else, Ghaemi's general thesis is fascinating in itself: The ideal that mentally healthy leaders, while often successful, make poor decisions during times of crisis. According to Ghaemi leaders with poorer mental health make good leaders during times of crisis and difficulty...
  • Nancy
    Aug 23, 2011
    Who writes history? Those who control the media and the winners of any conflict. This is a summary of some of history's greatest and worst leaders. It reads much like a dissertation only without statistical data to support the hypothesis but plenty of anecdotal which is soft data. The ...
  • Hadrian
    Aug 14, 2011
    The psychology of mental illness is a rough subject, especially when dealing with a deceased individual, even one who is so eminent that you have a lot of data to gather upon. I received an incomplete impression of the psychology of these figures, and recalled examples from my own, alt...
  • Karishma
    Mar 06, 2015
    I'm a little disappointed because I expected to like this book a lot more than I actually did. I was quite intrigued by the book initially - Ghaemi's thesis being that mental illness lends certain qualities to its sufferers which aid them in becoming more resilient, more realistic, cre...
  • Erwin
    Jan 28, 2012
    Excellent book. Profiles Lincoln, General Sherman, Hitler, Gandhi, Churchill. MLK. FDR. JFK and Ted Turner. Original writing. Interesting parallel between this book and How Great Generals Win, which also extensively profiles General Sherman, among other strategists. Dr. Ghaemi fo...
  • Cleokatra
    Nov 26, 2011
    I?m not sure what to make of this one. If I had some money, I think I would buy a few copies and pay some people who have been diagnosed with a mental illness to read this book. I?d really like to know what people with first-hand experience think of this. If you have a mental illne...
  • Gale Jake
    Jul 22, 2012
    Insightful in its basic concept, ie: leaders who tend toward manic are good in times of crisis, poor in times of peace and tranquility. Leaders who tend toward depression are good in times of peace and normal times, poor in times of crisis. He makes some good points. His approach wa...
  • Rebecca Budd
    Apr 25, 2012
    A First-Rate Madness was a page turner. The argument that in times of crisis insanity, rather than sanity, produces good results is a worthy starting point for a robust discussion. And he speaks of people that we know and respect: Churchill, Gandhi, Martin Luther King, Jr., Lincoln and...
  • فهد الفهد
    Jan 31, 2016
    ???? ?? ?????? ?????? ??? ????????? ??? ?? ??? ???? ?? ?????? ??????? ????? ??? ???? ????? ??? ????? ?????? ????? ???? ???? ? ????? -? ????? ??? ????? ???? ...
  • R.f.k
    Dec 07, 2016
    ??? ???? ?? ?????? ...
  • Alexis
    Nov 12, 2012
    Let's begin... I never took a psych class in college, and I am essentially self-taught in history, but I could tell almost immediately that I was going to agree with virtually nothing Ghaemi said. First, his definition of madness is purely limited to mania and depression, which I find ...
  • Stephanie
    Jul 24, 2017
    Our leaders cannot be perfect; they need not be perfect; their imperfections indeed may produce their greatness. The indelible smudges on their character may be signs of brilliant leadership. We make a mistake, however, when we choose leaders like us. This is our own arrog...
  • ليلى المطوع
    Jun 15, 2016
    ???? ??? ?????? ?????? ??? ?????? ?????? ???? ???? ??? ???? ?????? ???? ???? ?? ????? ?????? ??????? ???? ?? ??? ???????? ?? ???? ??????? ?? ??????? ???? ?...
  • Jennifer
    Sep 22, 2012
    As asocial studies teacher and a mental health professional, this book grabbed me right away. I enjoyed learning about his theory and how some of the characteristics of mental illness can be a benefit to leaders. I also think it does a good job of alleviating some of the stigma associa...
  • Nasser Moh'd
    Jun 04, 2017
    ???? ???? ????? ??? ????? ?????? ?????? ????? ???? ??????? ???????? "??? ????" ???? ?? ??? ??????? ??????? ? ?????? ???? ???? ???? ?????? ?????? ?? ????? ????...
  • Anna
    Apr 12, 2017
    I read this book for my psych discussion group, and we disagreed with so many of his claims. He didn't have very much evidence for some of the people he analyzed, and some of his diagnoses seemed like major reaches. There were some strong chapters, but he could have done without probab...
  • Yong Lee
    Dec 25, 2016
    Nassar Ghaemi's A First Rate Madness: first rate book about mental illness and crisis leadership from JFK to Lincoln. Awesome read. ...
  • Sarah
    Feb 11, 2017
    Awesome concept, but ignores an entire gender. ...