Austen Riggs Center

Two women walk on a paved path in front of a large lawn leading up to a white building framed by trees
Austen Riggs Center

The Austen Riggs Center in Stockbridge, Massachusetts, is marking its centennial this year. Ahead of its September gala, the psychiatric hospital is presenting a series of exhibitions and programs to explore its history. CEO Eric Plakun spoke with WAMC about how the hospital has grown over the past century, the central tenets of its ideology, and the role it’s played in town.

Austen Riggs Center in Stockbridge, Massachusetts
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The Austen Riggs Center in Stockbridge was recently ranked as the ninth best psychiatric hospital in the country by U.S. News & World Report. Massachusetts General Hospital, Yale-New Haven Hospital and Harvard Medical School affiliate McLean Hospital are among the top 10.

  In Running from Crazy , Mariel Hemingway, granddaughter of Ernest Hemingway, strives for a greater understanding of her family history of suicide and mental illness. As tragedies are explored and deeply hidden secrets are revealed, Mariel searches for a way to overcome a similar fate. The documentary is directed by Barbara Kopple.

The Austen Riggs Center in Stockbridge, MA will present a community event on suicide, stigma and mental illness at The Mahaiwe on March 28th at 2pm featuring a screening of the film, and a roundtable discussion on mental health with Mariel Hemingway; James L. Sacksteder MD (Medical Director/CEO of the Austen Riggs Center); Jane G. Tillman PhD (Evelyn Stefansson Nef Director of the Erikson Institute for Education and Research of the Austen Riggs Center); and Kelley Vickery, Founder and Executive Director of the Berkshire International Film Festival.

On this edition of Medical Monday is Dr. Eric Plakun of the Austen Riggs Center – a board certified psychiatrist and psychoanalytic psychotherapist practicing in Stockbridge, Massachusetts. WAMC's Bob Barrett hosts.

On this edition of Medical Monday is Dr. Eric Plakun of the Austen Riggs Center – a board certified psychiatrist and psychoanalytic psychotherapist practicing in Stockbridge, Massachusetts.

Dr. Plakun is a graduate of Hofstra University, and received his M.D. from the Columbia College of Physicians & Surgeons. He’s a distinguished fellow of the American Psychiatric Association, a member of its assembly, chair of the APA committee on psychotherapy by psychiatrists, and a fellow of the American College of Psychiatrists. WAMC’s Alan Chartock hosts.