Tribe: On Homecoming and Belonging

Sebastian Junger’s Tribe: On Homecoming and Belonging discusses PTSD and why it is so difficult for veterans to reintegrate into society. He asserts that because of the tribe mentality and structure of the military, veterans have trouble readjusting to the chaotic nature of modern society. HE cites both research and personal narratives to defend his claim.

I listened to this book is audio CD format and I loved reading it that way. It was extremely short and well written. Junger was concise in his writing, but still very engaging.

The section I enjoyed the most was when Junger talked about Indians (he makes a point of using that term specifically) and early Americans. He cites historical notes that lament that early Americans would leave their new communities to join the Indians. People would join the native society by choice, but Indians would fight to return to their society. Even Benjamin Franklin discussed this and was baffled by it. Junger argues that it is because of the tribal structure of the society and the sense of purpose that comes with it.

Overall, I enjoyed this book. It was read at a good pace and covered the topic. I just would have liked more information and a more in-depth look at the subject.



All the Single Ladies

I’ve tried to read this book multiple times, but could never seem to fit it in before I had to return it. Finally, I found it on Overdrive in audio form and sped through it.

All the Single Ladies: Unmarried Women and the Rise of an Independent Nation by Rebecca Traister is a well-researched and thought out book about the history and present reality of single women in America. Traister interviewed hundreds of women about their personal experiences and also cites other studies and books to support her claims.

Traister comes to the conclusion that the way to “save marriage” in America is for women to be equal and to support women as people who make their own decisions about their bodies and what to do with their lives. I agree 100% with her assertion. I tried to listen to this book with a critical ear and I still believe that her research fully justified her claims.

This book was occasionally hard for me to listen to. I learned a lot of the lessons about being by myself in college. While my friends were dating and in long-term relationships, I was more focused on classes and work. I grew up and went to college in Texas, where so many people are thinking about marriage early. I had a lot of female friends get married as soon as they graduated college, or before. I wish I’d had this book then, when I was doubting whether I would ever be in a long-term relationship, much less get married. It is reassuring to know that I’m still within the normal age range, even in Texas, where the average from 2010-2015 was 26.1 for women and 27.8 for men.

Overall, I found this book to be well-researched and informative. I am personally invested in the topic and the social issues that are discussed. I highly recommend this book to anyone curious about the current state of marriage, women, families, or socio-economic status for women in America.