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Publisher's Summary

Number one New York Times best seller

“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 best seller.

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 more than 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.

Cover image: © 2020 Succession H. Matisse / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York Courtesy of the Archives Henri Matisse, All rights reserved. 

©2014 Bessel van der Kolk (P)2021 Penguin Audio

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What listeners say about The Body Keeps the Score

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Overall Worthwhile, Lingers Too Long in the Why

I found this book to be extremely well documented and quite frankly, without the exceptional narration I don’t feel I would have gained as much from the authors knowledge in trauma. If you’re a fan of Sam Harris you’ll love this narration. As to the content, as someone who is a survivor of childhood trauma, I felt the book lingered too long in the multiple case histories and ‘why’ of the traumas and missed an opportunity to provide actionable solution, tools and resources for the reader. If you’re a trauma survivor the last thing you want or need is 20 hours of dark and triggering accounts, you’re living your own trauma already. What would have been invaluable to me would have been a sense of hope and possibility for healing and again, tools and resources to help those of us highly functional but quietly suffering, a chance to take what this obviously brilliant clinician has to share and incorporate it into our own lives. Still well worth the investment.

12 people found this helpful

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Eye opening

Wow. Never has an intro to a review been more appropriate. This book opened my mind and delivered an understanding of myself and everyone around me in a manner I had not considered before. Bottom line for me: everything matters. The body doesn’t forget anything, no matter what our brain tries to do to help us cope with life. Truly worthwhile listen for me. My gratitude to the author and his years of researching that brought this work to light.

8 people found this helpful

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Incredible

I am close to finishing this book and I have already recommended it to everyone I know. There are no negative words which I could use to describe this book. From the writing, to the consistency, organization, level of comprehension, detailed examples/stories, knowledge and much more, this book is the most put together piece of writing that I have ever had the pleasure of reading/listening to in my life. Not only that, but the information given about Trauma has been life changing for me. This is a book I'm going to be coming back to many times.

3 people found this helpful

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Great addition to audible!

I've long loved this work by Bessel van der Kolk, now I am really glad to own it in audio format - the narrator is great and I really hope it makes this read accessible to more open minds!

3 people found this helpful

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Book is amazing

My plan is to listen several more times. So much to absorb. All great information. 👍This book is a definite keeper. Author is caring, concise, with appropriate stories to accompany technical terms. I felt as if he was speaking directly to me. Will definitely pass it onto others. Thank you Author from thw bottom of my heart.

2 people found this helpful

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THIS is the book you need to understand trauma

I think I heard about this book in Emily Nagoski's "Come As You Are" and I'm extremely appreciative of the recommendation. This book has been instrumental in helping me to understand my wife's trauma, my own, and that of men, women, and children around me.

I often forgot that the narrator, Sean Pratt, was not the Dutch author as his voice was VERY calming and I could imagine him being a very good therapist for patients with trauma. It was a very easy listen.

I have been recommending this book to everyone struggling with their own traumas or the traumas of their loved ones and I'm going to keep doing so.

Thank you, Bessel van der Kolk, for sharing your findings with the world.

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A must read for ANYONE dealing with trauma

What a tremendously helpful book! The exploration, explanation and treatment for people suffering from various kinds of trauma is phenomenal.
Whether it is you who suffer or a loved one who suffers from PTSD; this is the key to freedom from the pits of despair due to severe psychological damage. The physical aspects are revealed and guide one to an understanding previously unknown.
This book is a revelation and should be shared with everyone.

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My Health Journey

I wish I would have read this book years ago. Learned so much about myself and why I do what I do,based on my trauma brain. Thank you sir for caring about the trauma community like no one has before.

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Offers a great amount of peace of mind for anyone struggling with understanding PTSD

The real life stories, and the in depth details of the symptoms experienced truly create a sigh of relief knowing and hearing that you are not alone with your symptoms. It is a lot of information to take in but just when you feel it’s getting a little “boring/repetitive” you get hit with an interesting & grasping wave of information. I cannot recommend enough.

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Very Helpful for the Body

The information in this audio book is outstanding.
Be aware this book can be very difficult because it will bring your past back for you to to understand and reprocess events.

Hope you will enjoy it as well as I did.