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Publisher's Summary

From the author of The Perfect Storm and War comes a book about why men miss war, why Londoners missed the Blitz, and what we can all learn from American Indian captives who refused to go home.

Tribe is a look at post-traumatic stress disorder and the challenges veterans face in returning to society. Using his background in anthropology, Sebastian Junger argues that the problem lies not with vets or with the trauma they've suffered but with the society to which they are trying to return.

One of the most puzzling things about veterans who experience PTSD is that the majority never even saw combat - yet they feel deeply alienated and out of place back home. The reason may lie in our natural inclination, as a species, to live in groups of 30 to 50 people who are entirely reliant on one another for safety, comfort and a sense of meaning: in short, the life of a soldier.

It is one of the ironies of the modern age that as affluence rises in a society, so do rates of suicide, depression and, of course, PTSD. In a wealthy society, people don't need to cooperate with one another, so they often lead much lonelier lives that lead to psychological distress.

There is a way for modern society to reverse this trend, however, and studying how veterans react to coming home may provide a clue to how to do it. But it won't be easy.

©2016 Sebastian Junger (P)2016 HarperCollins Publishers Limited

Critic Reviews

"An incredible work of frontline journalism." ( Independent, Books of the Year)
"In his acute observations of soldiers both in battle and at rest, Junger paints a vivid and realistic portrait of the fighting in Afghanistan, often bitterly funny and desperately sad." (Patrick Hennessey, Literary Review)
"The bloodiest and most compelling book you are ever likely to read on the enduring carnage in Afghanistan." ( The Times)
"One of the best books about war you will ever read. Beautifully written in unshowy prose and thoughtful, honest and profound. A masterpiece of the genre." ( Mail on Sunday)
"An intense account.... Junger uses his documentary skills to ask his comrades tough questions about killing, dying, loyalty and friendship. The result is a book not just about war, but about the limits of courage and, yes, love under pressure." ( Guardian)
"Absorbing and original.... Junger has found a novel and interesting lens through which to view the conflict in Afghanistan, and he captures many things a lesser writer might miss." ( New York Times)
"It takes a very good book to carry off a title as portentous as War, and Sebastian Junger has written one.... An outstanding war report: a precise and gripping account of some of the fiercest battles involving American soldiers in recent times." ( The Economist)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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    3 out of 5 stars
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happy recipient

intresting subject, well presented and easy to follow. gave me some food for my thoughts

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Interesting and meandering

An interesting book with interesting themes; however, it meanders through some points of view without any real empirical depth. 3 stars was probably half a star too generous.

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    5 out of 5 stars

It's a must read for the modern age!

A brilliant book that delivers a timeless perspective on the human condition. A must read for anyone.

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Very interesting, surprisingly compelling.

Good info and the author seems to be heartfelt in his approach to dealing with some touchy issues.

A short listen but thoroughly enjoyable nonetheless.

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Insightful

I would have liked to hear more detail on this subject, but in terms of providing a broad-brush outline of the challenges of living in a modern society, Junger had nailed it.

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Very interesting

Definitley a worthwhile purchase. The discussion about warriors assimilating into society was fascinating. Would've been great to delve deeper into that.

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Life changing

Do your self a favour and listen to this. For me, life changing information. Epic

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Simply amazing

I'm a double Afghanistan veteran and completely understand his thoughts and feelings on this. I love all of Sebastian's work. Must read for all clinical practitioners who deal with returned servicemen and women.

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  • Felipe M.
  • 06-05-2018

Gooe historical background and personalexperience

Easy light read. Author poses the problem and highligts points with relevant personal experience. Good theoretical background.

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  • Kurt
  • 05-02-2018

Very interesting

Loved the great personal and historical stories of solidarity and tribalism.

The only very slight criticism would maybe be the structure. Everything melted together a bit.

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  • Hussy
  • 25-12-2017

A guide for lost Young men

Sometimes you listen someone put wods on something that was already known. Tribe was that for me.

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  • JakalTheOne
  • 09-12-2017

Create a community, change your life!

If you could sum up Tribe in a few words, what would they be?
Great journalism.

Would you listen to Tribe again? Why?
Yes, I think so.

What was the most compelling aspect of this narrative?
How many of our psychological issues in the West is directly linked to individualism.

What could the authors have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?
I don't know. Maybe a little short.

What about Nick Landrum's performance did you like?
Pretty straightforward.

Any additional comments?
Watch his documentaries "Restrepo" and "Hell On Earth".

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  • Francesco
  • 20-11-2017

great

well written, well read. important topic that is very relevant to the chaotic state of the world we see today. 5 bags of popcorn .

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  • Mike
  • 18-10-2017

thought provoking and analytic

well researched pamphlet on the greatest threat to Western society. extremely interesting to listen to and learn from.

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  • Ciaran O'Regan
  • 27-05-2017

Important not just for soldiers but for us all

Our society is operating dramatically out of line with our evolutionary biology. This book is one of the few I have read that really shines a light on the gaping hole in human health we need to focus on but are not; deep meaningful socialization. This is a must read for anyone who has realized our societal structure is missing something huge but has been unable to pinpoint it.

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  • Byron
  • 18-02-2017

Thank you!

As a veteran and academic I am speechless. This book is a beautiful gift to my community.

Please share with other veterans, particularly those who are lost.

Thank you Sebastian, your book validates that some people do understand the true reality of post service life. You have removed a very heavy weight from my shoulders.

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  • Shane Doolin
  • 11-10-2016

ding ... the light went on

Diagnosed with PTSD i saw myself and for first time understood mysrlf and what ive been searching for ... for the last 5 yrs.

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  • Poyntonian
  • 04-07-2018

Brilliant listen, so interesting

Brilliantly written and thought provoking. I think some books are so enlightening and this certainly is one.

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  • Paul Stephenson
  • 13-06-2018

Great story and insight if a little short

The story is very good with interesting anecdotes and relevant research and stories backing up his theories. The only disappointment was how short it was. It would have been great to get a few more suggestions on how modern life can benefit from the positives of tribal life.

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  • Jonny
  • 08-04-2018

fascinating book

loved this book, listened to it while running and the miles flew by, so much so my long runs became really long

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 08-01-2018

Putting PTSD into perspective

A short book but very insightful into the human nature of tribes and how modern living fits into it.
Very enjoyable.

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  • Danny
  • 03-01-2018

Brilliant

A thought provoking read that gives credible argument to the importance of community and selflessness !

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  • ApexBlasé
  • 08-09-2017

Great book - Short Easy listen also

Enjoyed the book.. very interesting. Check the JRE podcast with the author also, v good as well.

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  • Truan Mathias
  • 18-07-2017

Very Important Work

This type of research is essential to humamity's future. Well written and read. Many great reminders and thoughts on how we need to live.

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  • Mr. N. Cartwright
  • 03-07-2017

Interesting concepts of community

Enjoyed this book. Offers excellent theory of community and tribe very relevant in explaining individual dysfunction in today's disconnected society.

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  • Marcin Grzadzielski
  • 15-06-2017

Quite a brilliant little book.

Enjoyable analysis of our modern day society. As a ex soldier I must say that I agree with a lot of things that are addressed here.