Title: Madness Made Me
Authors: O'Hagan, Mary
Genre: Non Fiction: New Zealand
Pages: 260
Year: 2014
Language: English
Description: From psychiatric wards through to the hallowed halls of the United Nations, Mary O'Hagan has had the full gamut of experience in the mental health sphere. With her belief in the value of 'madness' Mary channelled her experiences of the New Zealand mental health service and those of her fellow sufferers into committed advocacy, culminating in her roles as the Mental Health Commissioner and more recently as an international mental health consultant.

Sometimes uncomfortable, always honest and uniquely insightful, this is an important and thought-provoking personal account of the full human experience of 'madness', and its place in our society.
Categories: Non Fiction - New Zealand, Biography, Human Rights, Medical/Health, Morals/Ethics, Psychology, 2017 Titles


[Please log in to write a review]
By: CULV 001 2021-08-27 14:03:49
Mixed feelings - some enjoyed, some not, and some couldn't finish it. Depressing story and not one to read if you are already under mental pressure. Some found it very triggering. A good insight into her personal experience.

By: DUNED 061 2021-05-05 14:27:23
One of the best discussions we have had. What a remarkable woman!

By: PICT 001 2019-10-16 14:55:43
Everyone was pleased to have been given the chance to read this book. The second half was hard going but made our members very much more aware of this terrible situation. Most had someone they knew who had been in the system.

By: MOTUE 002 2019-03-15 13:28:56
Everyone found the book meaningful and disturbing. We appreciated the wonderful description of her feelings and experiences. Several of the group had experience of a family member who had engaged with mental health services.

By: PUTAR 001 2019-03-15 13:26:33
Compelling reading. Amazing achievement by author.

By: LOWER 007 2019-03-15 13:25:33
Our group really enjoyed and appreciated this book - well written with such a powerful and moving story. Probably our best discussion for years.

By: CHCH 058 2019-03-15 13:22:53
A lively discussion followed this book. Many admired the writer's courage, energy and zeal, and her insight as a previous patient. We agreed solutions to the health problems are difficult and expensive.

By: AUCK 226 2018-07-20 11:41:50
We really enjoyed the opportunity to read this book. A mind-shift from seeing 'madness' as a clinical problem to be fixed with external measures, to learning to accept others (or yourself) with 'mad' tendencies and techniques for dealing with it. We all had someone in our lives who made these comments very relatable.

By: NORTH 003 2018-07-20 11:38:38
The book was considered thought provoking, enlightening and educational. Perhaps the author's expectations of the ideal recovery situation are unlikely to be fulfilled at this time.

By: TEAWA 001 2018-07-20 11:36:43
Questions led to very wide-ranging discussions. There are so many varying types of mental illness and peoples' success with treatments that it's impossible to generalise. The book's message was to seek a way to accept and manage rather than to expect a cure.

The Book Discussion 
Scheme is a member of the Federation of Workers Educational Associations in Aotearoa New Zealand
BDS is a member of the Federation of Workers Educational Associations