Susanna Kaysen

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Susanna Kaysen
Born (1948-11-11) November 11, 1948 (age 73)[1]
Known forGirl, Interrupted
Parent(s)Carl Kaysen
Annette Neutra Kaysen[2]

Susanna Kaysen (born November 11, 1948) is an American author, best known for her 1993 memoir Girl, Interrupted.


Kaysen was born and raised in Cambridge, Massachusetts. She is the daughter of Annette (Neutra) and economist Carl Kaysen, a professor at MIT and former advisor to President John F. Kennedy. Her family is Jewish.[3]

Kaysen attended high school at the Commonwealth School in Boston, and The Cambridge School of Weston, before being sent to McLean Hospital in 1967 to undergo psychiatric treatment for depression. While there, she was diagnosed with borderline personality disorder. She was released after 18 months. She later drew on this experience for her 1993 memoir Girl, Interrupted, which was adapted into a film in 1999; she was portrayed by Winona Ryder.

Kaysen has one sister and is divorced. She lived for a time in the Faroe Islands, upon which experience her novel Far Afield is based.


  • Asa, As I Knew Him, 1987, ISBN 978-0-679-75377-3
  • Far Afield, 1990, ISBN 978-0-679-75376-6
  • Girl, Interrupted, 1993, ISBN 978-1-85381-835-6
  • The Camera My Mother Gave Me, 2001, ISBN 978-0-679-76343-7
  • Cambridge, 2014, ISBN 978-0-385-35025-9


  1. ^ Cf. Library of Congress catalog entry for Susanna Kaysen.
  2. ^ Fisher, Franklin M., "Carl Kaysen: 5 march 1920 . 8 february 2010" Archived 30 April 2015 at the Wayback Machine, Proceedings of the American Philosophical Society, Vol. 156, No. 3, September 2012
  3. ^ Sittenfeld, Curtis (23 May 2014). "Problem Child". The New York Times.

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