New book says Hemingway suffered an early form of dementia

Today, psychiatrists would believe that trying to diagnose Ernest Hemingway’s mental illness, posthumously, is unrealistic because they never had the chance to speak with him, draw his blood, study an MRI of his brain or interact with his family and friends. But that didn’t stop renowned forensic psychiatrist Andrew Farah, and he reveals the results his fascinating book “Hemingway’s Brain.” Hemingway is widely thought to have suffered bipolar disorder and alcoholism that eventually led to his 1961 suicide. But Farah, the chief of psychiatry at the High Point Division of the University of North Carolina Healthcare System, provides a new diagnosis, one that focuses on traumatic head injuries and a detailed neurological and psychological analysis. Farah’s examination, he believes, sets the record straight with the medical community and Hemingway scholars because Farah believes the tormented author was misdiagnosed — and could have been successfully treated had he not been. For starters, Farah astutely tracks Hemingway’s mental illness to his parents Grace Hall Hemingway and Clarence Edmonds Hemingway, the latter of whom committed suicide Dec. 6, 1928. After Clarence perished, at least four more Hemingways killed themselves, including Ernest, his sister Ursula, and his brother Leicester. Ernest’s granddaughter Margaux overdosed […]

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