Soldier from the War Returning by Thomas Childers
The Greatest Generation's Troubled Homecoming from World War II

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Synopsis

One of our most enduring national myths surrounds the men and women who fought in the so-called "Good War." The Greatest Generation, we're told by Tom Brokaw and others, fought heroically, then returned to America happy, healthy and well-adjusted. They quickly and cheerfully went on with the business of rebuilding their lives.

In this shocking and hauntingly beautiful book, historian Thomas Childers shatters that myth. He interweaves the intimate story of three families—including his own—with a decades' worth of research to paint an entirely new picture of the war's aftermath. Drawing on government documents, interviews, oral histories and diaries, he reveals that 10,000 veterans a month were being diagnosed with psycho-neurotic disorder (now known as PTSD). Alcoholism, homelessness, and unemployment were rampant, leading to a skyrocketing divorce rate. Many veterans bounced back, but their struggle has been lost in a wave of nostalgia that threatens to undermine a new generation of returning soldiers.

Novelistic in its telling and impeccably researched, Childers's book is a stark reminder that the price of war is unimaginably high. The consequences are human, not just political, and the toll can stretch across generations.

 

About Thomas Childers

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THOMAS CHILDERS is the Sheldon and Lucy Hackney Professor of History at the University of Pennsylvania. He is the author of five previous books on the Third Reich and the Second World War, most recently Wings of Morning and In the Shadows of War.
 
Published May 13, 2009 by Mariner Books. 368 pages
Genres: Health, Fitness & Dieting, History, War, Professional & Technical. Non-fiction

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But the more seriously damaged soldiers, including one from Childers’s hometown to whom he pays touching homage, remained outsiders forevermore—and, as he notes, some are only now being diagnosed with PTSD, 65 years after the war’s end.

Apr 01 2009 | Read Full Review of Soldier from the War Returnin...

St. Louis Today

On April 2, voters in St. Louis and St. Louis County will be asked to approve a 3/16-cent sales tax (less than 2 cents on a $10 purchase) to h… After controlling most of the game, Tigers again were left to explain a loss that defied logic ...

May 24 2009 | Read Full Review of Soldier from the War Returnin...

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