Samizdat Health Writer’s Co-operative Inc. is an international writers’ co-operative owned by its members. A member is anyone who writes or produces artwork for or otherwise works on publications produced by Samizdat and is willing to be a member and help find works and promote them.
Samizdat is open to taking works in fiction, non-fiction, graphic or other forms, that engage with the difficulties and issues thrown up by “health” – a domain that now occupies the place in our lives religion once occupied. We engage with mainstream medicine. Our objective is to ensure that ideas that are now difficult to publish get the widest possible distribution and earn a return for their authors.
David Healy, a professor in the Department of Family Medicine in McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, is a doctor, psychiatrist, psychopharmacologist, scientist and author. His main areas of research are the contribution of antidepressants to suicide, conflict of interest between pharmaceutical companies and academic medicine, and the history of pharmacology. Healy has written more than 200 peer-reviewed articles, 200 other articles, and 24 books, including The Antidepressant Era, The Creation of Psychopharmacology, The Psychopharmacologists Volumes 1–3, Let Them Eat Prozac, and Mania: A Short History of Bipolar Disorder.
He has been involved as an expert witness in homicide and suicide trials involving psychotropic drugs. He has brought concerns about some medications to the attention of drug regulators. He has also said that pharmaceutical companies sell drugs by marketing diseases and co-opting academic opinion-leaders. In his 2012 book Pharmageddon, he argues that pharmaceutical companies have dominated healthcare in America, often with life-threatening results for patients. Healy is a founder and chief executive officer of Data Based Medicine Limited, which aims to make medicines safer through RxISK.org an “online direct patient reporting of drug effects” platform.
Billiam James is an artist, musical storyteller and activist. What does he care about? People, emotions, and mental health. His mission? To change the way we act, by changing the way we feel… about ourselves, and about each other. Billiam James combines storytelling, visual art, music, and social activism. Over the past three decades, he has produced work addressing the following themes: rights for people with intellectual disabilities, over-medicalization of human behaviour, environmental activism, and free speech and political censorship.