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Publisher's Summary

John T. Cacioppo's groundbreaking research topples one of the pillars of modern medicine and psychology: the focus on the individual as the unit of inquiry. By employing brain scans, monitoring blood pressure, and analyzing immune function, he demonstrates the overpowering influence of social context - a factor so strong that it can alter DNA replication. He defines an unrecognized syndrome, chronic loneliness; brings it out of the shadow of its cousin, depression; and shows how this subjective sense of social isolation uniquely disrupts our perceptions, behavior, and physiology, becoming a trap that not only reinforces isolation but can also lead to early death. He gives the lie to the Hobbesian view of human nature as a "war of all against all," and he shows how social cooperation is, in fact, humanity's defining characteristic. Most important, he shows how we can break the trap of isolation for our benefit both as individuals and as a society.
©2008 John T. Cacioppo and William Patrick (P)2008 Tantor
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Critic Reviews

"Top-notch science writing: stimulating and useful information conveyed in accessible prose." ( Kirkus)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
2 out of 5 stars
By E.S. on 01-20-16

If you don't feel lonely, the narrator will help.

What would have made Loneliness better?

I didn't think this book would be cheerful or anything, but the narrator's voice is terrible. Monotone, sad and slow singsongy. I have an academic interest in this subject, but found myself feeling depressed after I listened to it in my car. The book promises to give hope, but I just couldn't take it and stop listening after a few days.

What could John T. Cacioppo and William Patrick have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

I found the book to be a little slow moving. Many of the examples were trite and hokey.

What didn’t you like about Dick Hill’s performance?

His tone and delivery were difficult because his voice is slow and monotone. It didn't fit well at all for a non-fiction book.

You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

I think the subject is very important, and maybe could have been okay with the voice if the content got to the point a little faster. For example, there were labored, general examples of fictional people experiencing loneliness that didn't seem to serve a purpose.

Any additional comments?

It's mediocre writing and reading -- generally lacking enthusiasm. With some editing and a spark, this could be a very good audiobook.

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4 of 6 people found this review helpful

2 out of 5 stars
By Bartlomiej Sliwa on 09-29-16

does offer any way of dealing with lonely

basically loniensess is proven to be harmful. an one should try avoid to be lonely. you known in case some one was considering taking up lonliness and thinking it wasn't that bad. the book is some what insightfull in describing it, and actually talks about a lot studies that show how loneliness impacts people but offers no solutions!!! essentially this book is useless

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3 of 5 people found this review helpful

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