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The Fourth Turning [Kindle Edition]

William Strauss , Neil Howe
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (174 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $17.99
Kindle Price: $11.50
You Save: $6.49 (36%)
Sold by: Random House LLC

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Book Description

First came the postwar High, then the Awakening of the '60s and '70s, and now the Unraveling.  This audacious and provocative book tells us what to expect just beyond the start of the next century.  Are you ready for the Fourth Turning?

Strauss and Howe will change the way you see the world--and your place in it.  In The Fourth Turning, they apply their generational theories to the cycles of history and locate America in the middle of an unraveling period, on the brink of a crisis.  How you prepare for this crisis--the Fourth Turning--is intimately connected to the mood and attitude of your particular generation.  Are you one of the can-do "GI generation," who triumphed in the last crisis?  Do you belong to the mediating "Silent Majority," who enjoyed the 1950s High?  Do you fall into the "awakened" Boomer category of the 1970s and 1980s, or are you a Gen-Xer struggling to adapt to our splintering world?  Whatever your stage of life, The Fourth Turning offers bold predictions about how all of us can prepare, individually and collectively, for America's next rendezvous with destiny.


From the Trade Paperback edition.


Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

The Fourth Turning continues the project of mapping out the place of generations in history, a project begun in the authors' earlier books Generations and 13th Gen. If millennial fever takes hold, The Fourth Turning may be only the first of an impending wave of pseudo-scholarly tracts prognosticating future (but imminent!) doom as we collectively close the books on this millennium. Those expecting a serious or dry tome might be put off by the authors' taste for bulleted text and catchy phrasings, but can you blame these guys for wanting to make impending peril as exciting as possible? After all, they think we are headed toward "events on par with the Revolution, the Civil War, or World War II" in the next 20 years. Mixing solid understanding of present generational divisions, with some fairly broad generalizations, Strauss and Howe promise to move from history to prophecy. Fans of Future Shock, Megatrends, or Powershift will be familiar with the authors' style of writing and not at all put off by the book's reach or style. Their take on history provides an intriguing (if not always reliable) lens through which to view the past, present, and maybe even the future.

From Library Journal

After researching historical patterns, the authors (Generations: The History of America's Future, Morrow, 1991) conclude that America is on the verge of crisis. They substantiate their hypothesis by identifying and tracing a repetitive, four-stage historical cycle that, throughout recorded time, started on a high note and ended in hardship. Narrator Michael Tilford's polished, convincing voice and steady pacing lend an air of legitimacy to the authors' assertions. A brief question-and-answer session between the narrator and the authors at program's end provides an interactive quality that enhances the sometimes methodical drone of the historical analysis. Like other works of prophecy, The Fourth Turning should circulate well in public libraries.?Mark P. Tierney, The World Bank, Washington, D.C.
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Product Details


Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
177 of 185 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Sweeping, compelling, and quite readable September 29, 2003
By Marc
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I picked up a copy of "The Fourth Turning" because to refresh myself on the generational differences of donors. I was hoping to help a colleague wrestle with how to apply fundraising techniques with attention to these cohorts. Having read the authors' 13th Gen a few years ago, I knew this would be an erudite review. I got what I was looking for and much more! "The Fourth Turning" is actually a compelling look at human history, especially Western history since the middle of the fifteenth century!
Howe and Strauss have amazingly taken the most recent 20th century generations (GI, Silent, Boomer, Xer, and Millennial) and found corresponding generations for the last few hundred years. From this, they've developed a convincing rubric of generational archetypes-GIs and Millennials are the "Hero," Silents are the "Artist," Boomers are the "Prophet," and Xers are the "Nomad." Moreover, they've revisited the millennia old theory that time moves through seasons in a cyclical pattern, one that corresponds with the seasons of the year. The post-WWII era was our "High" or spring; the Consciousness Revolution was our "Awakening" or summer; the 80's and 90's was our "Unraveling" or fall; and we're currently headed for our "Crisis" or winter. They chose to label the seasons "turnings" and the time encompassing the four turnings as the "saecula," a label used by the ancients that roughly corresponds to a century.
With an amazing attention to detail, a scholarly eye to history, and a wonderfully readable writing style, Howe and Strauss show the interplay of the generational archetypes and the turnings.
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181 of 200 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Explanatory--but don't rely on it entirely February 19, 2002
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
The book _The Fourth Turning_ is a history combined with prophecy written by generational sociologists William Strauss and Neil Howe. This book is inspiring and provides interesting explanations for why things are the way they turned out to be, but it still doesn't have all the answers.
The theory is basically that history goes through four types of turnings: a conservative High, in which institutions are stable after the success of a major war (the Era of Good Feelings, the Victorian Era, the '50s), a spiritual Awakening in which young people scrap convention for religious discovery (Ben Franklin's Great Awakening, the Transcendental Awakening, the turn-of-the-century Muckrake reform era, the '60s), a wild Unravelling (the colorful Gold Rush, the roaring twenties, and the current era that began about 1984), and a fourth turning -- or Crisis (the Revolutionary War, the Civil War and the Great Depression and World War II were the last three examples). A catalyst will spark the Fourth Turning that will become around 2005. These turnings change when each generation enters a new phase of life.
After you read this book, it's one of those books that completely transforms your mode of thinking. Both the present and the prophesied future are explained by means of generations -- fit into four different types ("archetypes") that shift along with the turnings. The authors identify the Lost Generation (born 1883-1900), the G.I. Generation (born 1901-1924), the Silent Generation (born 1925-1942), the Baby Boomers (born 1943-1960), the 13th Generation (born 1961-1981) and the Millennial Generation (born since 1982). They explain how these generations relate to those throughout history, and date the historical generations born all the way back to 1433.
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110 of 126 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Historical Prophecy February 22, 2003
Format:Paperback
Member of the 13th Generation? Millenial Generation? The Boomers? Care to track your own development through the maze of historical events to find out where you've been, and more importantly, where you are going? Where our country is going? Then pick this book up immediately. Simply put, the "Fourth Turning" is THE most important book written in the last twenty years, and a book that should be required reading.
Strauss and Howe apparently have devoted their lives to the study of history and the development of generations in societies. The book is loaded, and I mean, loaded with historical references, some of which I wasn't familiar with until now. By looking at these events, and more importantly, looking at the people that went along with those events, Strauss and Howe noticed some recurring patterns in generations over the centuries. Apply this pattern to our country, and to our future, they have correctly predicted that we are headed for a "Fourth Turning", a time of great criss and peril.
Normally, I shun books that people claim to have "visions of the future" involved with them. They are frequently erroneous and based on the whims of the author. However, "The Fourth Turning" is different. By basing their theories of the future on past events, they offer support and credence to their thoughts. The effect is both enlightening and chilling, but it is one that we simply cannot ignore.
I found every single page of their book fascinating as a study or recent history and future history. Also, I personally found self-enlightenment in reading about the generation in which I belong, the long lost "Gen X" crowd, or the title they label it, "13th".
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Love it
Understand cycles. Then find a gentleman name Celente and hear his info on trends.
A classic book. Read more
Published 7 days ago by Christine Waller
4.0 out of 5 stars Cycle theory presented by generations
The book presents the theory of historical cycles through what happened to generations (G.I., Silent, Boomer 13ers and Millenials) as they came of age and how they will deal with... Read more
Published 21 days ago by knowledge seeker
4.0 out of 5 stars A little repetitive, but worth the read
I got stuck around the middle with the in depth history lesson filled with minutiae, but then again exact detail history has always made me snore... Read more
Published 1 month ago by Kaleigh L
3.0 out of 5 stars tough reading
The book was hard to follow. Bouncing back and forth with different generations, and using different terms for those generations, did not help. I'm an average reader. Read more
Published 1 month ago by informed
3.0 out of 5 stars Non Review
I bought this for someone else and did not read it myself but only want to get this off my review list, sorry.
Published 2 months ago by Anne Martin
5.0 out of 5 stars The Fourth Turning.
A well-written recap of the authors' previous works published in 1991. Both books read a little like textbooks but well worth the effort and meticulously documented.
Published 2 months ago by Charles D. Kosmerl
4.0 out of 5 stars My son loves this book
My son asked for this book and has read it half way thru and loves it. But, he likes this kind of stuff.
Published 2 months ago by Paige L. Habgood
5.0 out of 5 stars Best "fortune teller" book of all time
Of the literally hundreds of "prepare for the future" books I own this book purchased when it first came out is the absolute best one. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Oz Survivor
3.0 out of 5 stars Good, but Boring
The gist of this book is very real as it was written in the late 1990s and a lot of it has happened or is happening now. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Julie Murphy
1.0 out of 5 stars Conjecture, conjecture, conjecture
This book is a lot of unsupported conjecture. I'm 79 years old, a member of the silent, and the authors observations don't match with many of mine. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Larry Kelly
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Fourth Turning
That is determined by the publisher-I would say in this case, supply and demand. The demand for the paperback in general is on the decline, whilst the demand for digital media multiplies exponentially each year.
Jan 31, 2013 by Jennifer H. Barnes |  See all 2 posts
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