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Who is John Nash?
John Nash was born on June 13, 1928 in Bluefield, West Virginia. His father was an electrical engineer and his mother worked as a school teacher before marrying her husband. John was brought up in a loving household that nurtured his genius. It was apparent at an early age that he liked to work independently, often playing alone.
He has been awarded the von Neumann Prize and the 1994 Nobel Prize for Economics, as well as fellowships of prestigious scientific academies and societies.
John Nash and Schizophrenia
The end of "A Beautiful Mind," the Oscar-nominated movie based loosely on the life of Nobel Prize winner John Forbes Nash Jr., depicts the Princeton mathematician's emergence from the stranglehold of paranoid schizophrenia , the most feared and disabling of mental illnesses. Moviegoers who have watched the cinematic metamorphosis of actor Russell Crowe from the disheveled genius who furiously covers his office walls with delusional scribblings to the silver-haired academic perfectly at home in the rarefied company of fellow laureates in Stockholm might assume that Nash's recovery from three decades of psychosis is unique.
But mental health experts say that while Nash's life is undeniably remarkable, his gradual recovery from schizophrenia is not.
Recovery of John Nash from schizophrenia
John Nash's recovery from schizophrenia is a moving story. But we are not well served when the movie fibs about the antipsychotic drugs' role in his recovery. If anything, his story should inspire us to reconsider anti-psychotics' long-term efficacy with an honest, open mind. That would be a first step toward reforming our care -- and if there is one thing we can conclude from the WHO studies, it is that reform is vitally needed. Perhaps then we could even hope that schizophrenia outcomes in this country would improve to the point that they were equal to those in poor countries such as India and Nigeria.
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