John Nash: A Hero’s Brilliant Triumph Over Mental Illness

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10 thoughts on “John Nash: A Hero’s Brilliant Triumph Over Mental Illness

  1. Nash is an inspirational person. And his recovery from schizophrenia is truly amazing. Sometimes I wonder though if his mathematical abilities were tied somehow to his illness.

  2. I wonder that, too. Geniuses each seem to have a unique way of looking at the world, and many seem to suffer from that perspective getting out of control. Nash said that his notions of extraterrestrials came to him in the same way as his mathematical ideas, which is as fascinating as it is tragic. It makes you wonder if insanity is the price to be paid for genius– the world would be an empty place without the likes of Nash or Poe or van Gogh, but these poor guys suffered terribly.

    In any case, I hope the poor man is financially secure and comfortable now.

    A Beautiful Mind, indeed. 🙂

  3. I agree that Nash is an exceptional person who overcame a lot. He was able to conquer a mental challenge while advancing our knowledge in economics. He pushed past his barriers and became an inspiration for many.

  4. I don’t think the title of this piece should be “John Nash: A Hero's Brilliant Triumph Over Mental Illness.” The world knows John Nash as a remarkable man because of what he did before he developed a mental illness. He wrote his Nobel-winning dissertation at the age of 21 and did not develop symptoms of schizophrenia until he was in his 30s. It is true that he did not receive the award until he had developed symptoms, but it is misleading to say that he had a “Triumph over mental illness” when his epic display of brilliance occurred long before the mental illness had a chance to affect his mind. The heroes in this situation are the researchers who developed Thorazine (and subsequent medications for schizophrenia with less negative side effects) and facilitated the deinstitutionalization that freed so many patients suffering inhumane treatment.

  5. Geoff, from what I have read about Nash, he eschewed medication and overcame his illness on his own without it. True, he did his most groundbreaking work prior to the onset of the illness’s worst symptoms. But that in no way detracts from the human struggle he had to undergo.

  6. ^ I think if you have schizophrenia, it is a degenerative force that robs you of your ability to reason. I have heard Nash claim in an interview that he began to realize that the hallucinations were illogical and that he reasoned his way out of having to suffer through them. I dont believe he could have done this without medication.

  7. The story of John Nash absolutely amazes me. To overcome any mental illness, even with professional help, is no minor feat. The fact that he could somehow manage to recover from schizophrenia on his own is every bit as impressive as his breakthroughs in mathematics. for both of these wonders, Nash is inspiring, and a good example of a hero.

  8. Thanks for this review. Was doing a Google search and noticed this blog. I liked it much that I bookmarked the item. Additionally, I will be returning for more so you’ll want to keep posting! – I had a great idea this morning, but I didn't like it. Samuel Goldwyn 1882 1974

  9. I had no idea that the movie A Beautiful Mind was about John Nash. The movie totally makes sense now. I had watched the movie when I was younger, so I didn’t really understand it that much. At the time, I thought the movie was very disturbing and not something that I would see again. But now after reading this, I completely understand what the movie is about.

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