A Book Review of ‘Tribe’ by Sebastian Junger
'Tribe" by Sebastian Junger
By Signal Contributor
Saturday, November 12th, 2016

A good friend of mine gave me a copy of Junger’s Tribe to review and critique and since it deals with Veterans, homecoming and healing I felt I should share my thoughts with other Veterans.  First let me assure you that this is not a scientific work by a psychiatrist or mental health expert, nor is Junger a scholar writing an in-depth work with many years of research. Junger is a journalist who has covered war in Bosnia and the Middle East and has interviewed hundreds of Veterans and civilians living in combat areas. His book is written in a journalist style that is simple to read and only four chapters long. Most readers should be able to read this book quickly in one sitting. Reviews have so far been positive, about 86 percent, but some readers have questioned his statistics and conclusions; Veteran feedback would be valuable.

Tribe begins and ends by examining the examples of Native American tribes that gave a strong sense of belonging and purpose to its members. Strong bonds were formed within the tribe. This sense of belonging made it easier for members to adjust back into their society after warring with other tribes. He also quotes historians like Benjamin Franklin and Thomas Paine who lamented that many white settlers would go native and join the tribes, the reverse almost never happened. By the way this view is also controversial, read All the Real Indians Died Off by Roxanne Dunbar Ortiz.

It is in the third chapter that the book writes stories of PTSD and homecoming for US soldiers. The author feels that although PTSD is real and finally being addressed by the VA and American society, mistakes are being made in the recognition and treatment of PTSD. Jungar points out that there are many levels of PTSD, acute to severe, and that not all of those suffering from PTSD were front line troops or even in combat areas. Jungar’s statistics are challenged by the VA and the Director of the Afghanistan Study Groups. Despite the detractors, how we define and treat stress is an important topic and this book can help start a conversation on how best to allocate limited government resources.

Ricardo is a veteran, employee of the West LA VA, and a Native American.

About the author

Signal Contributor

Signal Contributor

'Tribe" by Sebastian Junger

A Book Review of ‘Tribe’ by Sebastian Junger

A good friend of mine gave me a copy of Junger’s Tribe to review and critique and since it deals with Veterans, homecoming and healing I felt I should share my thoughts with other Veterans.  First let me assure you that this is not a scientific work by a psychiatrist or mental health expert, nor is Junger a scholar writing an in-depth work with many years of research. Junger is a journalist who has covered war in Bosnia and the Middle East and has interviewed hundreds of Veterans and civilians living in combat areas. His book is written in a journalist style that is simple to read and only four chapters long. Most readers should be able to read this book quickly in one sitting. Reviews have so far been positive, about 86 percent, but some readers have questioned his statistics and conclusions; Veteran feedback would be valuable.

Tribe begins and ends by examining the examples of Native American tribes that gave a strong sense of belonging and purpose to its members. Strong bonds were formed within the tribe. This sense of belonging made it easier for members to adjust back into their society after warring with other tribes. He also quotes historians like Benjamin Franklin and Thomas Paine who lamented that many white settlers would go native and join the tribes, the reverse almost never happened. By the way this view is also controversial, read All the Real Indians Died Off by Roxanne Dunbar Ortiz.

It is in the third chapter that the book writes stories of PTSD and homecoming for US soldiers. The author feels that although PTSD is real and finally being addressed by the VA and American society, mistakes are being made in the recognition and treatment of PTSD. Jungar points out that there are many levels of PTSD, acute to severe, and that not all of those suffering from PTSD were front line troops or even in combat areas. Jungar’s statistics are challenged by the VA and the Director of the Afghanistan Study Groups. Despite the detractors, how we define and treat stress is an important topic and this book can help start a conversation on how best to allocate limited government resources.

Ricardo is a veteran, employee of the West LA VA, and a Native American.

Upcoming Events

Jan
12
Fri
all-day Domes – Art Exhibit @ Old Town Newhall Library
Domes – Art Exhibit @ Old Town Newhall Library
Jan 12 – May 11 all-day
Domes - Art Exhibit @ Old Town Newhall Library | Santa Clarita | California | United States
Local resident Naomi Young, is the artist featured in the latest exhibit at the Old Town Newhall Library. The exhibit features original paintings and multimedia by Young, an artist born and raised in Jerusalem, Israel,[...]
Feb
1
Thu
all-day “The Golden Oaks of Santa Clarit... @ Valencia Library
“The Golden Oaks of Santa Clarit... @ Valencia Library
Feb 1 – Jun 1 all-day
“The Golden Oaks of Santa Clarita,” Art Exhibit @ Valencia Library  | Santa Clarita | California | United States
“THE GOLDEN OAKS OF SANTA CLARITA” ART EXHIBIT BY BRAD SERGI ON DISPLAY AT THE VALENCIA LIBRARY Library hours: Mon-Thu 10 a.m. – 9 p.m., Fri 10 a.m. – 6 p.m., Sat 10 a.m. – 5[...]
Feb
14
Wed
all-day Tickets Available Now for 41st A... @ Dodger Stadium
Tickets Available Now for 41st A... @ Dodger Stadium
Feb 14 – May 12 all-day
Tickets Available Now for 41st Annual SCV Dodger Day @ Dodger Stadium | Los Angeles | California | United States
SANTA CLARITA DODGER DAY TICKETS ON SALE NOW! Tickets Start at $25 and Benefit Local Schools and Non-Profits It’s time to step up to the plate! The Santa Clarita City Council invites residents to purchase[...]
Apr
19
Thu
all-day Santa Clarita Cowboy Festival Co... @ Event Locations Vary
Santa Clarita Cowboy Festival Co... @ Event Locations Vary
Apr 19 – Apr 22 all-day
BUY YOUR TICKETS NOW FOR COWBOY FESTIVAL CONCERTS – Locations, Times & Prices Vary 25th Annual Santa Clarita Cowboy Festival offers ticketed performances and special events Get ready for some toe-tapping, two-stepping, guitar-picking musical performances![...]
7:00 pm Hart High School Presents ‘Bye, ... @ Hart High school Auditorium
Hart High School Presents ‘Bye, ... @ Hart High school Auditorium
Apr 19 @ 7:00 pm
Hart High School Presents 'Bye, Bye Birdie' @ Hart High school Auditorium | Santa Clarita | California | United States
Spring Musical Coming April 2018! Hart High Theatre is proud to present Bye Bye Birdie! April 19, 20, 27 & 28 @ 7pm April 28 & 29 @ 1pm When the draft selects rock star[...]
Apr
20
Fri
all-day Santa Clarita Cowboy Festival Co... @ Event Locations Vary
Santa Clarita Cowboy Festival Co... @ Event Locations Vary
Apr 20 – Apr 23 all-day
BUY YOUR TICKETS NOW FOR COWBOY FESTIVAL CONCERTS – Locations, Times & Prices Vary 25th Annual Santa Clarita Cowboy Festival offers ticketed performances and special events Get ready for some toe-tapping, two-stepping, guitar-picking musical performances![...]
7:00 pm Hart High School Presents ‘Bye, ... @ Hart High school Auditorium
Hart High School Presents ‘Bye, ... @ Hart High school Auditorium
Apr 20 @ 7:00 pm
Hart High School Presents 'Bye, Bye Birdie' @ Hart High school Auditorium | Santa Clarita | California | United States
Spring Musical Coming April 2018! Hart High Theatre is proud to present Bye Bye Birdie! April 19, 20, 27 & 28 @ 7pm April 28 & 29 @ 1pm When the draft selects rock star[...]
Apr
21
Sat
all-day Santa Clarita Cowboy Festival Co... @ Event Locations Vary
Santa Clarita Cowboy Festival Co... @ Event Locations Vary
Apr 21 – Apr 24 all-day
BUY YOUR TICKETS NOW FOR COWBOY FESTIVAL CONCERTS – Locations, Times & Prices Vary 25th Annual Santa Clarita Cowboy Festival offers ticketed performances and special events Get ready for some toe-tapping, two-stepping, guitar-picking musical performances![...]
10:00 am Astronomy Day @ Valencia Library
Astronomy Day @ Valencia Library
Apr 21 @ 10:00 am – 10:00 pm
The Local Group Astronomy Club and The Santa Clarita Public Library present our free annual Astronomy Day Celebration. We will be at the Valencia branch of the Santa Clarita Public Library from 10am to 3pm.[...]
10:00 am Resource Parents Needed to Foste... @ College of the Canyons, Dr. Dianne G. Van Hook University Center, Room 222
Resource Parents Needed to Foste... @ College of the Canyons, Dr. Dianne G. Van Hook University Center, Room 222
Apr 21 @ 10:00 am – 12:00 pm
Resource Parents Needed to Foster or Foster-Adopt a Child @ College of the Canyons, Dr. Dianne G. Van Hook University Center, Room 222 | Santa Clarita | California | United States
Adoption is a meaningful way for individuals and couples to fulfill their dream of parenting.  There are approximately 64,000 children in foster care in California.  Los Angeles County’s foster care population exceeds 21,000 children with[...]