”Prozac on the Couch combines a bold thesis regarding the persistence of Freudian categories of sexual difference amid the paradigm shift in psychiatry, documentation spanning professional and popular discourses, and lively, clear prose.”
— Mari Jo Buhle author of Feminism and Its Discontents: A Century of Struggle with Psychoanalysis
"Like its patients and practitioners, psychiatry does have its issues. . . . Jonathan Metzl looks at some of these issues in a mind-bending, literate way. . . . This book is extraordinarily researched and written in an engaging style that invites professionals and laypeople to open their minds to a broad and informed view of modern psychiatry and psychiatric drugs."
— Ann Arbor News
"[Metzl] provides insight into the popular and professional responses to psychiatric treatments. . . ." — On Campus with Women
"Metzl’s book helps give clarity to a highly charged subject. One of the book’s merits is Metzl’s command of both the science of medicine, pharmacy, and biology, and the tools of cultural studies. Able to handle the vocabulary of psychiatry’s critics as well as that of its proponents, he provides a refreshing voice in the debates about the merits and dangers of psychopharmacology. . . . Metzl’s written a smart and necessary book." — John Reuland, Bridge
"[A] plea for a truce between those who deal with the mind and those who study the brain. . . . [An] engrossing history of psychiatry over the past 50 years. . . ." — The Economist
"Prozac on the Couch is a creative, intelligent, and provocative challenge to the notion that biologic psychiatry has replaced psychoanalysis as the dominant therapeutic model in psychiatry. . . . [A]n intriguing and challenging work standing at the intersection of medicine, history, culture, and 'gender studies.' . . . [F]or those who are looking for fresh perspectives, and who are willing to have their assumptions questioned, this book will be a real education and a pleasure to read." — Delese Wear, New England Journal of Medicine
"[F]ull of genuinely fascinating observations. . . . Prozac on the Couch is a thought-provoking and useful book. . . ."
— Lisa Jervis, Bitch
"Anyone who has been confronted by patients waving pharmaceutical advertisements or patients who think they need medication because they can't get into Harvard will appreciate Prozac on the Couch. The book helps us remain aware that the ways in which we identify illness and functional impairment and treat patients are influenced by patients' expectations and our own values, which are culture bound." — Martha L. Crowner, Psychiatric Services
"Interesting." — Surinder Sucha Nand, JAMA
"Prozac on the Couch has important things to say about the meaning of psychiatric practice. . . . Metzl tells an interesting story of how psychoanalysts defined psychiatric problems, and thereby opened a space for pharmaceuticals."
— Elizabeth Bromley, Medscape General Medicine
"This is an important book for its contributions to understanding the complex connection between culture and science. By locating psychiatric history within a cultural framework, Metzl provides the reader with surprising, compelling, and rather unnerving insights into the nature of the pharmaceutical industry. . . . In an era where (philosophically divorced) objectivitiy in science is glorified and where the distance between science and capitalism is painfully thin, Metzl offers an analysis that is both enlightening and thought provoking." — Leeat Granek, Journal of the History of the Behavioral Sciences
"Jonathan Metzl's book gains as much of its considerable intellectual clout from the very fact that the author himself is a practicing psychiatrist as it does from its excellent historical discussion and detailed documentation. . . . Nuanced, well written, and meticulously documented, it is the kind of book that reinvents the dialogue in a field, attracting thought and debate . . ." — Suzanne White Junod, Pharmacy in History
"[I]nsightful. . . . [Metzl] has added a crucial dimension to the historiography of recent psychiatry and has artfully demonstrated the salience of gender theory for this field." — Nicholas Weiss, Journal of the History of Medicine and Allied Sciences
"Jonathan Metzl's provocative book . . . takes on biological psychiatry's master narrative . . . and persuasively, with wit and elegance, deals it a devastating blow. . . . Sparkling insights abound in Prozac on the Couch. . . . [A] delightful, challenging book that will be of great interest to historians of psychiatry and, more generally, to anyone interested in the intriguing gender politics of psychopharmacology."
— Elizabeth Lunbeck, Isis
"This book's insights extend beyond the cultural history of psychotropics to the powerful, contradictory appeal of academic cultural studies today. It suggests that cultural and biological turns can be made at the same time, and sometimes by the same people."
— Ellen Herman, American Historical Review
"[W]ell-written and insightful. . . . [A] meaningful contribution to discussions of gender and mental health." — Adam Rafalovich, Social History of Medicine
“[A] complex and original cultural history of American biological psychiatry and psychotropic medications from 1955-2002.” — Lynn Gorchov, Social History of Alcohol and Drugs
“Prozac on the Couch is a totally fresh and mind-altering work of medical history and cultural criticism that challenges us to think about psychiatric medications in ways that are both uncomfortable and inspiring: in other words, in ways that challenge us to change our points of view about what we swallow and why.” — Lauren Slater, author of Prozac Diary
“Jonathan Michel Metzl's book is an original and insightful exploration of the lively cultural meanings he locates in the spaces between the person, the psychotropic drug, the physician, and the neuroscientist.”
— Emily Martin, author of The Woman in the Body: A Cultural Analysis of Reproduction