About the Book

Superpower Syndrome

Superpower Syndrome

America’s Apocalyptic Confrontation with the World
October 2003
Trade Paperback · 200 Pages
$12.95 U.S. · $19.50 CAN
ISBN 9781560255123
Nation Books


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No one is better equipped than psychiatrist Robert Jay Lifton-a leading scholar of thought control and mass violence- to make sense of the extreme moment. From Hiroshima survivors to Nazi doctors, from Vietnam veterans to the cult that sarin-gassed the Tokyo subways, he has explained to us global apocalyptic urges, the ravages of psychic numbness, and the psychology of the survivor. Now, as al- Qaeda's desire to purify the earth of "evil" meets the unilateral urge to dominate the globe's sole superpower, Lifton believes we have arrived at a remarkably perilous moment. The United States-from its leaders to much of its people-feels itself painfully vulnerable and thinks of itself as a survivor nation. The combination of such feelings roiling through the land over the last year and an administration with unprecedented military power bent on dominating and purifying the earth adds up to an intensely dangerous atmosphere-in fact, a "syndrome." Unfortunately, there is no therapy available for empires-or rather, the only therapy available is self-prescribed. But while Lifton can't be therapist to the earth's last superpower, he can bring together a half century of wisdom and apply it to Superpower Syndrome.

About the Author

Robert Jay Lifton is currently Visiting Professor of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School. His books include Death in Life: Survivors of Hiroshima, The Nazi Doctors, Home from the War, and Destroying the World to Save It. Lifton is the recipient of a National Book Award and a Los Angeles Times Book Award.