Home > Posts by alkprism ( > Page 2)

Review-Jan Wong’s “Out of the Blue”

Out of the Blue: A Memoir of Workplace Depression, Recovery, Redemption, and Yes, Happiness
By Jan Wong
Jan Wong, 2012

Reviewed by Jane Campbell

“Depression does not change who you are,” writes Jan Wong in her new memoir Out of the Blue, “it sits like a cloud over your original personality.” Certainly Wong, the intrepid and controversial Canadian journalist known for living in China during the Cultural Revolution and sneaking box cutters through post 9/11 security, among other things, retains her reporter’s dedication to exposing injustice, even as the cloud of depression casts a shadow over her life.

As Wong points out, writers seem to be particularly vulnerable to depression, and Out of the Blue is one among a whole pantheon of memoirs detailing mental illness, from William Styron’s Darkness Visible to Joan Didion’s The Year of Magical Thinking. Wong manages to make a unique contribution to this literary sub-genre by exploring what she calls “workplace depression,” or depression brought about and exacerbated by the particular indignities and stressors of the contemporary North American working environment. Continue reading Review-Jan Wong’s “Out of the Blue”