The divine madness of Philip K. Dick

by Arnold, Kyle,

Format: Print Book 2016
Availability: Available at 1 Library 1 of 1 copy
Available (1)
Location Collection Call #
CLP - Main Library Second Floor - Non-fiction PS3554.I3 Z545 2016
Location  CLP - Main Library
Collection  Second Floor - Non-fiction
Call Number  PS3554.I3 Z545 2016
Widely recognized as one of the most imaginative writers of the 20th century, Philip K. Dick helped to shape science fiction into the popular genre it is today. His stories, renowned for their sophisticated philosophical themes and startling portrayals of simulated realities, inspired numeroustelevision and film adaptations, including the 1982 cult classic Blade Runner.Dick's personal life took on an otherwordly quality when, in 1974, he famously had a series of bizarre visions. According to Dick, a pink light beamed psychic information into his brain, awakening memories of a past life as an ancient Christian revolutionary and granting him contact withtime-traveling extraterrestrials. He witnessed scenes from ancient Rome superimposed over his California neighborhood, and warned local police he was a dangerous machine programmed to self-destruct. After the visions faded, Philip K. Dick spent the rest of his life trying to fathom the meaning ofwhat he called his "divine madness." Was it schizophrenia? Or a genuine religious experience?In The Divine Madness of Philip K. Dick, clinical psychologist Kyle Arnold probes the fascinating mystery of Dick's heart and mind, and shows readers how early traumas opened Dick to profound spiritual experiences while also predisposing him toward drug dependency and violence. Disputing the myththat Dick had schizophrenia, Arnold contends that Dick's well-known paranoia was caused by his addiction to speed. Despite Dick's paranoia, his divine madness was not a sign of mental illness, but a powerful spiritual experience conveyed in the images of science fiction.
Die messages
Retreat syndrome
Beetle satori
Counterfeit burglary
The pink light
The Exegesis : living information
Aftermath : null metanoia
Divine madness.

Published Reviews
Publisher's Weekly Review: "Psychologist Arnold tries to do many things at once in this "psychobiography" of SF author Philip K. Dick. He accomplishes some, but falls short on others. Arnold analyzes key events and patterns in his subject's life, using Dick's stories to illustrate the points he makes about the author's mental state at the time they were written. Dick's "origin story" begins with the death of his twin sister, Jane, in infancy, and continues with his mother's resentment of Dick for surviving. Arnold argues that the many traumas Dick experienced, beginning with parental neglect, contributed to his drug addictions, five troubled marriages, and breaks with reality, notably the visions he referred to collectively as "2-3-74." Refuting the diagnosis most commonly ascribed to Dick-schizophrenia-Arnold describes the author's mental illnesses one by one, including anorexia, paranoia, severe anxiety, vivid hallucinations, suicidal tendencies, and violent outbursts followed by amnesia. This unique take on a beloved writer has its flaws-for example, the passages connecting Dick's life to his fiction can feel like an afterthought-but its repetitive quality ultimately feels apt, capturing the cyclical nature of addiction and mental illness. (June) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved."
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Additional Information
Series Inner lives.
Subjects Dick, Philip K. -- Psychology.
Dick, Philip K. -- Family.
Science fiction, American -- History and criticism.
Psychology and literature.
Publisher New York, NY :Oxford University Press,2016
Edition First edition.
Language English
Description ix, 234 pages ; 19 cm.
Bibliography Notes Includes bibliographical references (pages 219-222) and index.
ISBN 9780199743254
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