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Odysseus in America: Combat Trauma and the Trials of Homecoming / Jonathan Shay ; Foreword by Max Cleland and John Mccain.

Odysseus in America: Combat Trauma and the Trials of Homecoming / Jonathan Shay ; Foreword by Max Cleland and John Mccain.

The author of Achilles in Vietnam explores the problems faced by combat veterans when they re-enter American life, using Homer's Odyssey as an allegorical template and advocating changes in American military practice that could help prevent psychological and moral injury to milit... read full description below.

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ISBN 9780743211567
Published 15 January 2003 by Simon & Schuster Australia
Format Other book format/Other
Author(s) By Shay, J.

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Full details for this title

ISBN-13 9780743211567
ISBN-10 0743211561
Stock Out of stock
Status Not currently available
Publisher Simon & Schuster Australia
Imprint Simon & Schuster Australia
Publication Date 15 January 2003
International Publication Date 5 November 2002
Publication Country Australia Australia
Format Other book format/Other
Author(s) By Shay, J.
Category Asian / Middle Eastern History
Asian history: Vietnam War
American history: Vietnam War
Military History
Social Groups & Communities
War & Defence Operations
Battles & Campaigns
Neurology & Clinical Neurophysiology
Interest Age General Audience
Reading Age General Audience
NBS Text Military History
ONIX Text General/trade;Professional and scholarly;College/higher education
Number of Pages 288
Dimensions Width: 146mm
Height: 235mm
Spine: 25mm
Weight 123g
Dewey Code 616.85212
Catalogue Code Not specified

Description of this Book

In his acclaimed book Achilles in Vietnam, Dr. Jonathan Shay used the Iliad as a prism through which to examine how ancient and modern wars have battered the psychology of the men who fight. Now he turns his attention to the Odyssey, Homer's classic story of a soldier's homecoming, to illuminate the real problems faced by combat veterans reentering civilian society. Drawing on his years of experience working with Vietnam veterans, Shay illustrates how the Odyssey can be read as a metaphor for the pitfalls that trap many veterans on the road back to civilian life. He also explains how veterans recover, and advocates changes to American military practice that will protect future servicemen and servicewomen while increasing their fighting power. The Odyssey, Shay argues, offers explicit portrayals of behavior common among returning soldiers in our own culture -- danger-seeking, womanizing, explosive violence, drug abuse, visitation by the dead, obsession, vagrancy, and homelessness. Supporting his reading with examples from his fifteen-year practice treating Vietnam combat veterans, Shay shows how Odysseus's mistrustfulness, his lies, and his constant need to conceal his thoughts and emotions foreshadow the experiences of many of today's veterans. Throughout, Homer strengthens our understanding of what a combat veteran must overcome to return to and flourish in civilian life, just as the heartbreaking stories of the veterans Shay treats give us a new understanding of one of the world's greatest classics. With a foreword by Vietnam veteran U.S. Senators John McCain and Max Cleland, representing bipartisan support for what Dr. Shay is trying to accomplish, Odysseusin America is an impassioned and cogent plea to renovate American military institutions -- and a brilliant rereading of Homer's epic.

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Awards, Reviews & Star Ratings

NZ Review Ralph Peters author of Beyond Terror and Fighting for the Future Vibrant, provocative thinking and clarity of style on the page are Jonathan Shay's consistent hallmarks. Even those who disagree with his conclusions will find his work of profound value. This is a moral, insightful, stimulating book.

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Author's Bio

There is no author biography for this title.

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