Brad Henry wonders: "Has anyone documented what was the nature of Van Gogh's mental illness? I noted in reading the Bio that Van Gogh had gonorrhea at one time. Is it possible that his mental problems were related to long term exposure to that disease or possibly long term exposure to syphilis? I understand that mental disorders can occur from long term untreated syphilis."
Can anyone recommend a good, well researched book which explores this issue in detail?
Anh-Thu Rasaretnam has a recommendation as well:
I found the discussion/theories on Vincent's mental illness quite interesting and would like to suggest another book which also dealt with this subject. It's called Touched With Fire: Manic-depressive Illness and the Artistic Temperament by Kay Redfield Jamison (professor of psychiatry @ John Hopkins) She cited journals discussing Meniere's disease as well as rebuttals.. then, gave her own theory on manic-depressive illness. The book not only discussed Vincent's plight but of many other artists, poets, musicians ..etc. This is a very informative book for anyone wanting to know more about manic-depression and its link to artistic, creative individuals. Dr. Jamison, herself, suffers from this illness.
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