Interesting article in this week’s Listener (Chicken Soup of the Wallet by Noel O’Hare) which comments on doctors in the UK sending people to libraries to read “self-help” books rather than prescribe anti-depressants. The main thrust of the argument seems to be that patients get to be proactively about their situation as well as also reducing costs on the health system.
I like the comment at the end of the article that argues that if you’re reading ‘self-help’ books you should also be reading a range of fiction to enter into the (simulated) experiences of others and to learn from them. It ends with a quote from Chomsky.
“It is quite possible,” Noam Chomsky has said, “that we will always learn more about human life and personality from novels than from scientific psychology.”