About Maps to the Other Side by Sascha Altman DuBrul: Part mad manifesto, part revolutionary love letter, part freight train adventure story, this story is a self-reflective shattered mirror, a twist on the classic punk rock travel narrative that searches for authenticity and connection in the lives of strangers and the solidarity and limitations of underground community.
Beginning at the edge of the internet age, a time when radical zine culture prefigured social networking sites, these timely writings paint an illuminated trail through a complex labyrinth of undocumented migrants, anarchist community organizers, brilliant visionary artists, revolutionary seed savers, punk rock historians, social justice farmers, radical mental health activists, and iconoclastic bridge builders.
This book is a document of one person’s odyssey to transform his experiences navigating the psychiatric system by building community in the face of adversity; a set of maps for how rebels and dreamers can survive and thrive in a crazy world.
“DuBrul is a madly gifted storyteller, and I’ve been waiting for this book since the day I first read his early stories about train-hopping and the squat on Avenue C. Whether he is writing about seed-saving, or madness, or the history of punk, his is one of the most passionate and relevant voices of these crazy times. This book will make you feel good to be alive.”
-Ruth Ozeki, author of A Tale For the Time Being and My Year of Meats
“Sascha Altman DuBrul’s extraordinary real life experience, cautionary tales, and trips to the outer edges of sanity and back teach us not only about the value of living our own lives well, but also about the value of taking care of our friends’ lives in their most vulnerable moments.”
-Kate Bornstein, author of A Queer and Pleasant Danger and Hello, Cruel World: 101 Alternatives to Suicide for Teens, Freaks, and Other Outlaws
“This book brings me back to the zines of my youth. Sascha is a great writer and probably an unacknowledged Boddhisatva. While I was seeking nirvana in meditation centers, Sascha was still fully engaged with creating a revolution. As a buddhist teacher and unlicensed psychotherapist, I love that this book challenges the dominant paradigm and my own conditioning around mental health.”
-Noah Levine, author of Dharma Punx
“Maps moved me in the same way that Jack Kerouac’s On the Road did decades ago.”
-Robert Whitaker, author of Mad in America
“Genius. These powerful stories of adventure, sorrow, and love will inspire readers to think about their own lives, especially those tinged with madness. Seeing the world through Sascha’s sparkling eyes is a breakthrough—you will fall in love with his mad mad heart.”
-Novella Carpenter, author of Farm City: The Education Of An Urban Farmer
“Over a decade ago DuBrul wrote an article on the cover of the SF Bay Guardian that resulted in tens of thousands coming together questioning the psychiatric disease model of mental illness. You will be different after reading DuBrul’s first book. And I cannot wait to share in the paradigm shifting, cultural explosions this debut is destined to elicit!”
-Bonfire Madigan Shive, Performing Artist and Community Activist
“Crack open this book at your peril. For this way lies madness . . . divine madness. Witness the concrete visions and subterranean journeys of a 21st Century vagabond, captured here in plain English.”
-Eric Drooker, author of Flood, Bloodsong, and Illuminated Poems
“Maps to the Other Side is the autobiography not just of one confused, big-hearted kid, but of a whole eager, anxious generation and the era in which they came of age. The detours, the breakdowns, the smashed mirrors.”
“Sascha DuBrul is a visionary leader creating powerful new ways to narrate madness. This book shows DuBrul as a moving storyteller, but also an exceptional re-teller of rusty old clinical stories that have become too stiff and mechanical to truly help people navigate their psychic differences. These insights are revolutionary and just in time.”
-Bradley Lewis, MD, PhD is an Associate Professor at New York University and author of Narrative Psychiatry: How Stories Can Shape Clinical Practice.