Prozac Nation author Elizabeth Wurtzel passes away at the age of 52

Elizabeth Wurtzel, the author of the acclaimed confessional memoir Prozac Nation: Young and Depressed in America, has died at the age of 52. 

She passed away on Tuesday at a Manhattan hospital following a long battle with breast cancer. 

The author announced her diagnosis back in 2015 and had a double mastectomy. 

However, the cancer metastasized to her brain and she passed away from complications from leptomeningeal disease, an illness that takes place when cancer spreads to the cerebrospinal fluid.

Prozac Nation author Elizabeth Wurtzel passed away on Tuesday at a Manhattan hospital at the age of 52 following a long battle with breast cancer

Prozac Nation author Elizabeth Wurtzel passed away on Tuesday at a Manhattan hospital at the age of 52 following a long battle with breast cancer

Prozac Nation author Elizabeth Wurtzel passed away on Tuesday at a Manhattan hospital at the age of 52 following a long battle with breast cancer

Her memoir, published at the age of 26 in 1994, was groundbreaking for its candid account of depression and drug addiction

Her memoir, published at the age of 26 in 1994, was groundbreaking for its candid account of depression and drug addiction

Her memoir, published at the age of 26 in 1994, was groundbreaking for its candid account of depression and drug addiction

Her memoir, published at the age of 26 in 1994, was groundbreaking for its candid account of depression and drug addiction. 

The book was named after the antidepressant drug Prozac, which she was one of the first people to be prescribed, and revealed her harrowing journey with depression. 

‘By turns wrenching and comical, self-indulgent and self-aware, “Prozac Nation” possesses the raw candor of Joan Didion’s essays, the irritating emotional exhibitionism of Sylvia Plath’s “Bell Jar” and the wry, dark humor of a Bob Dylan song,’ New York Times book critic Michiko Kakutani wrote. 

Her book was praised for sparking dialogue about clinical depression.  

In a following memoir, published in 2002 at the age of 35, entitled More, Now, Again, she documented her drug abuse that landed her in and out or rehab. 

Her writing made her a Gen X celebrity who helped revive the personal memoir genre in the 1990s

Her writing made her a Gen X celebrity who helped revive the personal memoir genre in the 1990s

Her writing made her a Gen X celebrity who helped revive the personal memoir genre in the 1990s

In her last Instagram post she post with her rescue dog in this snap from October 2019

In her last Instagram post she post with her rescue dog in this snap from October 2019

In her last Instagram post she post with her rescue dog in this snap from October 2019

Her writing made her a Gen X celebrity who helped revive the personal memoir genre in the 1990s. 

Born on July 31, 1967, Wurtzel was raised in New York City, received a BA in comparative literature from Harvard College and a JD from Yale Law School. 

In her book she revealed her battle with depression started between the ages of 10 to 12.  After graduating from school she worked as a critic writer for the New Yorker and New York Magazine. 

She is survived by her husband Jim Freed.

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