Home Books

The Age of Anxiety: A History of America’s Turbulent Affair with Tranquilizers

In The Age of Anxiety, historian Andrea Tone draws on a broad array of original sources – manufacturers’ files, FDA reports, letters, government investigations, and interviews with inventors, physicians, patients, and activists – to provide the first comprehensive account of the rise of America’s tranquilizer culture. She transports readers from the bomb shelters of the Cold War to the scientific optimism of the Baby Boom generation, to the “just-say-no” pharmaceutical Puritanism of the late 1970s and 1980s to contemporary debates about anxiety and the newest drugs to treat it. This book sheds new light on how America became hooked on synthetic solutions to the problem of personal angst.

About the book