Synopses & Reviews
"Essential reading for anyone interested in understanding and treating traumatic stress and the scope of its impact on society." Alexander McFarlane, Director of the Centre for Traumatic Stress Studies
A pioneering researcher transforms our understanding of trauma and offers a bold new paradigm for healing in this New York Times bestseller
Trauma is a fact of life. Veterans and their families deal with the painful aftermath of combat; one in five Americans has been molested; one in four grew up with alcoholics; one in three couples have engaged in physical violence. Dr. Bessel van der Kolk, one of the world's foremost experts on trauma, has spent over three decades working with survivors. In The Body Keeps the Score, he uses recent scientific advances to show how trauma literally reshapes both body and brain, compromising sufferers' capacities for pleasure, engagement, self-control, and trust. He explores innovative treatments — from neurofeedback and meditation to sports, drama, and yoga — that offer new paths to recovery by activating the brain's natural neuroplasticity. Based on Dr. van der Kolk's own research and that of other leading specialists, The Body Keeps the Score exposes the tremendous power of our relationships both to hurt and to heal — and offers new hope for reclaiming lives.
"The book is full of wisdom, humanity, compassion and scientific insight, gleaned from a lifetime of clinical service, research and scholarship in the field of traumatic stress. A must read for mental health and other health care professionals, trauma survivors, their loved ones, and those who seek clinical, social, or political solutions to the cycle of trauma and violence in our society."
Rachel Yehuda, Ph.D., professor of psychiatry and neuroscience; director of the Traumatic Stress Studies Division at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York, NY
"Dr. van der Kolk's masterpiece combines the boundless curiosity of the scientist, the erudition of the scholar, and the passion of the truth teller." Judith Herman, M.D., clinical professor of psychiatry, Harvard Medical School; author of Trauma and Recover
"The Body Keeps the Score is a cutting-edge offering for the general reader to comprehend the complex effects of trauma, and a guide to a wide array of scientifically informed approaches to not only reduce suffering, but to move beyond mere survival — and to thrive."
Daniel J. Siegel, M.D., clinical professor, UCLA School of Medicine, author of Brainstorm: The Power and Purpose of the Teenage Brain; Mindsight: The New Science of Personal Transformation; and The Developing Mind: How Relationships and the Brain Interact to Shape Who We Are
"This is masterpiece of powerful understanding and brave heartedness...Dr. van der Kolk offers a brilliant synthesis of clinical cases, neuroscience, powerful tools and caring humanity, offering a whole new level of healing for the traumas carried by so many."
Jack Kornfied, author of A Path with Heart
About the Author
Bessel van der Kolk, M.D., is the founder and medical director of the Trauma Center in Brookline, Massachusetts. He is also a professor of psychiatry at Boston University School of Medicine and director of the National Complex Trauma Treatment Network. When he is not teaching around the world, Dr. van der Kolk works and lives Boston.