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{ "item_title" : "The Invisible Kingdom", "item_author" : [" Meghan O'Rourke "], "item_description" : "A NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLERFINALIST FOR THE 2022 NATIONAL BOOK AWARD FOR NONFICTIONNamed one of the BEST BOOKS OF 2022 by NPR, The New Yorker, Time, and VogueRemarkable. -Andrew Solomon, The New York Times Book Review At once a rigorous work of scholarship and a radical act of empathy.--Esquire A ray of light into those isolated cocoons of darkness that, at one time or another, may afflict us all. --The Wall Street JournalEssential.--The Boston GlobeA landmark exploration of one of the most consequential and mysterious issues of our time: the rise of chronic illness and autoimmune diseases A silent epidemic of chronic illnesses afflicts tens of millions of Americans: these are diseases that are poorly understood, frequently marginalized, and can go undiagnosed and unrecognized altogether. Renowned writer Meghan O'Rourke delivers a revelatory investigation into this elusive category of invisible illness that encompasses autoimmune diseases, post-treatment Lyme disease syndrome, and now long COVID, synthesizing the personal and the universal to help all of us through this new frontier. Drawing on her own medical experiences as well as a decade of interviews with doctors, patients, researchers, and public health experts, O'Rourke traces the history of Western definitions of illness, and reveals how inherited ideas of cause, diagnosis, and treatment have led us to ignore a host of hard-to-understand medical conditions, ones that resist easy description or simple cures. And as America faces this health crisis of extraordinary proportions, the populations most likely to be neglected by our institutions include women, the working class, and people of color. Blending lyricism and erudition, candor and empathy, O'Rourke brings together her deep and disparate talents and roles as critic, journalist, poet, teacher, and patient, synthesizing the personal and universal into one monumental project arguing for a seismic shift in our approach to disease. The Invisible Kingdom offers hope for the sick, solace and insight for their loved ones, and a radical new understanding of our bodies and our health.", "item_img_path" : "https://covers4.booksamillion.com/covers/bam/1/59/463/379/1594633797_b.jpg", "price_data" : { "retail_price" : "28.00", "online_price" : "28.00", "our_price" : "28.00", "club_price" : "28.00", "savings_pct" : "0", "savings_amt" : "0.00", "club_savings_pct" : "0", "club_savings_amt" : "0.00", "discount_pct" : "10", "store_price" : "28.00" } }
The Invisible Kingdom|Meghan O'Rourke
The Invisible Kingdom : Reimagining Chronic Illness
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Overview

A NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLERFINALIST FOR THE 2022 NATIONAL BOOK AWARD FOR NONFICTIONNamed one of the BEST BOOKS OF 2022 by NPR, The New Yorker, Time, and Vogue

"
Remarkable." -Andrew Solomon, The New York Times Book Review
"At once a rigorous work of scholarship and a radical act of empathy."--Esquire "A ray of light into those isolated cocoons of darkness that, at one time or another, may afflict us all." --The Wall Street Journal

"Essential."--The Boston Globe

A landmark exploration of one of the most consequential and mysterious issues of our time: the rise of chronic illness and autoimmune diseases A silent epidemic of chronic illnesses afflicts tens of millions of Americans: these are diseases that are poorly understood, frequently marginalized, and can go undiagnosed and unrecognized altogether. Renowned writer Meghan O'Rourke delivers a revelatory investigation into this elusive category of "invisible" illness that encompasses autoimmune diseases, post-treatment Lyme disease syndrome, and now long COVID, synthesizing the personal and the universal to help all of us through this new frontier. Drawing on her own medical experiences as well as a decade of interviews with doctors, patients, researchers, and public health experts, O'Rourke traces the history of Western definitions of illness, and reveals how inherited ideas of cause, diagnosis, and treatment have led us to ignore a host of hard-to-understand medical conditions, ones that resist easy description or simple cures. And as America faces this health crisis of extraordinary proportions, the populations most likely to be neglected by our institutions include women, the working class, and people of color. Blending lyricism and erudition, candor and empathy, O'Rourke brings together her deep and disparate talents and roles as critic, journalist, poet, teacher, and patient, synthesizing the personal and universal into one monumental project arguing for a seismic shift in our approach to disease. The Invisible Kingdom offers hope for the sick, solace and insight for their loved ones, and a radical new understanding of our bodies and our health.

Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781594633799
  • ISBN-10: 1594633797
  • Publisher: Riverhead Books
  • Publish Date: March 2022
  • Dimensions: 9.06 x 6.14 x 1.26 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Page Count: 336

Related Categories

In her early 20s, Meghan O’Rourke began to experience an array of symptoms—fatigue, joint pain, brain fog, hives, fever, a sensation of electric shocks along her legs and arms—that neither doctors nor bloodwork could connect to a diagnosis. When one doctor suggested that O’Rourke might have an autoimmune disease, a condition in which the immune system begins to turn on the body, O’Rourke recalled her practical Irish aunts who lived with rheumatoid arthritis, Hashimoto’s disease and ulcerative colitis, all autoimmune diseases. As O’Rourke entered her 30s, her symptoms grew worse, despite seeing multiple specialists. She found herself barely able to leave her apartment, let alone have the baby she’d been hoping for. O’Rourke is the author of three collections of poetry and a memoir, The Long Goodbye. In The Invisible Kingdom, she chronicles her long search for healing, layering in extensive reporting on the rise of chronic illness and autoimmune disease and the way our medical system fails to see ailments that aren’t readily diagnosable or easily treated. Likewise, she notes that autoimmune diseases are far more likely to affect women, and women, in turn, are more likely to be told that their symptoms are all in their heads. “Of the nearly one hundred women I interviewed, all of whom were eventually diagnosed with an autoimmune disease or other concrete illness, more than 90 percent had been encouraged to seek treatment for anxiety or depression by doctors who told them nothing physical was wrong with them,” she writes. O’Rourke examines her own experience with a lucid but compassionate lens, and she brings that same mix of analysis and compassion to the book’s reporting. It’s a delicate balancing act to write about a long journey of misery without being tedious or repetitive. She pulls it off by adding lyrical imagery and the words of other writers, such as Alice James and Susan Sontag, to her descriptions of suffering, the peculiar treatments she found herself undergoing, and the effect her quest for healing had on her marriage. And yes, the book reaches a happy, though not uncomplicated, ending. While it’s especially useful for those who have personally encountered chronic illness, The Invisible Kingdom will add to everyone’s understanding of disease and health. Ultimately it offers a fresh image of what good medicine could look like: doctors understanding each patient as a whole person, not just as a collection of parts.

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