Trauma and Memory: Brain and Body in a Search for the Living Past: A Practical Guide for Understanding and Working with Traumatic Memory

Written by:
Peter A. Levine
Narrated by:
Rick Adamson

Unabridged Audiobook

Release Date
August 2017
5 hours 30 minutes
Designed for psychotherapists and their clients, Peter Levine's latest best-seller continues his groundbreaking exploration of the central role of the body in processing—and healing—trauma.

With foreword by Bessel van der Kolk, author of The Body Keeps the Score

In Trauma and Memory, bestselling author Dr. Peter Levine (creator of the Somatic Experiencing approach) tackles one of the most difficult and controversial questions of PTSD/trauma therapy: Can we trust our memories? While some argue that traumatic memories are unreliable and not useful, others insist that we absolutely must rely on memory to make sense of past experience. Building on his 45 years of successful treatment of trauma and utilizing case studies from his own practice, Dr. Levine suggests that there are elements of truth in both camps. While acknowledging that memory can be trusted, he argues that the only truly useful memories are those that might initially seem to be the least reliable: memories stored in the body and not necessarily accessible by our conscious mind.

While much work has been done in the field of trauma studies to address 'explicit' traumatic memories in the brain (such as intrusive thoughts or flashbacks), much less attention has been paid to how the body itself stores 'implicit' memory, and how much of what we think of as 'memory' actually comes to us through our (often unconsciously accessed) felt sense. By learning how to better understand this complex interplay of past and present, brain and body, we can adjust our relationship to past trauma and move into a more balanced, relaxed state of being. Written for trauma sufferers as well as mental health care practitioners, Trauma and Memory is a groundbreaking look at how memory is constructed and how influential memories are on our present state of being.
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Gerasimos Makaras

I really enjoyed this book. Like another review said though, this will not outline exercises to do for Somatic Experiencing. I believe SE to be a successful treatment for trauma. The only odd thing I find odd is that, with over 45 years experience with this, why does Dr Levine refer to same people (Nancy, Mariam, Ray) in so many of his books, interviews, and YouTube videos. You’d think he’d have endless examples of people who benefited without ever having to use the same people’s experiences twice. I don’t know … odd.

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Jodie Nichols

If looking for steps on how to heal trauma, this may not be the text for you. "Healing Trauma" by PhD Peter A. Levine is a small text but more step by step. This book: "Trauma and Memory" is excellent if you're the type to be in therapy and over think things, this gives some of the science and case studies of successfully treated patients which may be helpful to hear about if you're doing therapy that incorporates Somatic Experiencing, and to help suspend your excessive thinking and have a little faith that what you're doing will have help. The narrator does a good job too.

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