Lincoln's melancholy : how depression challenged a president and fueled his greatness / Joshua Wolf Shenk.
Author: Shenk, Joshua Wolf.
Edition: 1st Mariner Books ed.
Publisher: Boston : Houghton Mifflin, 2006, c2005.
ISBN: 0618773444 (pbk.)
Description: xiv, 350 p. ; 21 cm.
Subject: Lincoln, Abraham, 1809-1865 Psychology.
Presidents United States Biography.
Notes: "A Mariner book."
Contents: The community said he was crazy -- A fearful gift -- I am now the most miserable man living -- A self-made man -- A misfortune, not a fault -- The reign of reason -- The vents of my moods and gloom -- Its precise shape and color -- The fiery trial through which we pass -- Comes wisdom to us.
Summary: Drawing on seven years of his own research and the work of other esteemed Lincoln scholars, Shenk reveals how the sixteenth president harnessed 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 revelatory account of Lincoln and his legacy. Based on careful research, this book unveils a wholly new perspective on how our greatest president brought America through its greatest turmoil. 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--From publisher description.