Last updated October 6, 2020
This is a list of books available for review in Anthropology & Aging. If you are interested in reviewing one of these titles or have a suggestion for a book that you would like to see reviewed, please send this information, including the book format you prefer (we encourage e-versions whenever available) to the Anthropology & Aging book reviews editor, Christine Verbruggen (christine.verbruggen(at)kuleuven.be) and register your full name, address, and a brief description of your areas of expertise or background that qualifies you for writing a review in the author submission portal of Anthropology & Aging. If your request is approved, you will receive additional instructions on composing the review. Reviews are typically 750-900 words long and submitted within three months of the receipt of the title. Reviews for films, performances, exhibits, or other media with relevance to the anthropology of aging are also welcome, but we ask that you contact the book reviews editor before proceeding with the review.

Aulino, Felicity. 2019. Rituals of Care: Karmic Politics in an Aging Thailand

Aulino, Felicity. 2019. Rituals of Care: Karmic Politics in an Aging Thailand. [Ithaca]: Cornell University Press. pp 210

End-of-life issues are increasingly central to discussions within medical anthropology, the anthropology of political action, and the study of Buddhist philosophy and practice. Felicity Aulino’s Rituals of Care speaks directly to these important anthropological and existential conversations. Against the backdrop of global population aging and increased attention to care for the elderly, both personal and professional, Aulino challenges common presumptions about the universal nature of “caring.” The way she examines particular sets of emotional and practical ways of being with people, and their specific historical lineages, allows Aulino to show an inseparable link between forms of social organization and forms of care.

Unlike most accounts of the quotidian concerns of providing care in a rapidly aging society, Rituals of Care brings attention to corporeal processes. Moving from vivid descriptions of the embodied routines at the heart of home caregiving to depictions of care practices in more general ways—care for one’s group, care of the polity—it develops the argument that religious, social, and political structures are embodied, through habituated action, in practices of providing for others. Under the watchful treatment of Aulino, care becomes a powerful foil for understanding recent political turmoil and structural change in Thailand, proving embodied practice to be a vital vantage point for phenomenological and political analyses alike.

Basting, Anne. 2020. Creative Care: A Revolutionary Approach to Dementia and Elder Care

Basting, Anne. 2020. Creative Care: A Revolutionary Approach to Dementia and Elder Care. Harper One. Price: $27,99 (Hardcover); $16,99 (Paperback); 14,99 (e-book); $23,99 (MP3).

A MacArthur Genius Grant recipient pioneers a radical change in how we interact with older loved ones, especially those experiencing dementia, as she introduces a proven method that uses the creative arts to bring light and joy to the lives of elders.

In Creative Care, Anne Basting lays the groundwork for a widespread transformation in our approach to elder care and uses compelling, touching stories to inspire and guide us all—family, friends, and health professionals—in how to connect and interact with those living with dementia.

A MacArthur Genius Grant recipient, Basting tells the story of how she pioneered a radical change in how we interact with our older loved ones. Now used around the world, this proven method has brought light and joy to the lives of elders—and those who care for them. Here, for the first time, everyone can learn these methods. Early in her career, Basting noticed a problem: today’s elderly—especially those experiencing dementia and Alzheimer’s— are often isolated in nursing homes or segregated in elder-care settings, making the final years of life feel lonely and devoid of meaning. To alleviate their sense of aloneness, Basting developed a radical approach that combines methods from the world of theater and improvisation with evidence-based therapies that connect people using their own creativity and imagination.

Rooted in twenty-five years of research, these new techniques draw on core creative exercises—such as “Yes, and . . .” and “Beautiful Questions.” This approach fosters storytelling and active listening, allowing elders to freely share ideas and stories without worrying about getting the details “correct.” Basting’s research has shown that these practices stimulate the brain and awaken the imagination to add wonder and awe to patients’ daily lives—and provide them a means of connection, both with the world and with those caring for them. Creative Care promises to bring light and hope to a community that needs it most.

Bauer-Maglin, Nan, ed. 2019. Widows': Words Women Write on the Experience of Grief, the First Year, the Long Haul, and Everything in Between

Bauer-Maglin, Nan, ed. 2019.  Widows’ Words Women Write on the Experience of Grief, the First Year, the Long Haul, and Everything in Between. Rutgers University Press. Price: $28,5 (Paperback)

Becoming a widow is one of the most traumatic life events that a woman can experience. Yet, as this remarkable new collection reveals, each woman responds to that trauma differently. Here, forty-three widows tell their stories, in their own words.

Some were widowed young, while others were married for decades. Some cared for their late partners through long terminal illnesses, while others lost their partners suddenly. Some had male partners, while others had female partners. Yet each of these women faced the same basic dilemma: how to go on living when a part of you is gone.

Widows’ Words is arranged chronologically, starting with stories of women preparing for their partners’ deaths, followed by the experiences of recent widows still reeling from their fresh loss, and culminating in the accounts of women who lost their partners many years ago but still experience waves of grief. Their accounts deal honestly with feelings of pain, sorrow, and despair, and yet there are also powerful expressions of strength, hope, and even joy. Whether you are a widow yourself or have simply experienced loss, you will be sure to find something moving and profound in these diverse tales of mourning, remembrance, and resilience.

Bitenc, Rebecca A. 2019. Reconsidering Dementia Narratives: Empathy, Identity and Care

Bitenc, Rebecca A. 2019.   Reconsidering Dementia Narratives: Empathy, Identity and Care. New York: Routledge. pp 272.

Reconsidering Dementia Narratives explores the role of narrative in developing new ways of understanding, interacting with, and caring for people with dementia. It asks how the stories we tell about dementia – in fiction, life writing and film – both reflect and shape the way we think about this important condition.

Highlighting the need to attend to embodied and relational aspects of identity in dementia, the study further outlines ways in which narratives may contribute to dementia care, while disputing the idea that the modes of empathy fostered by narrative necessarily bring about more humane care practices. This cross-medial analysis represents an interdisciplinary approach to dementia narratives which range across auto/biography, graphic narrative, novel, film, documentary and collaborative storytelling practices. The book aims to clarify the limits and affordances of narrative, and narrative studies, in relation to an ethically driven medical humanities agenda through the use of case studies.

Answering the key question of whether dementia narratives align with or run counter to the dominant discourse of dementia as ‘loss of self’, this innovative book will be of interest to anyone interested in dementia studies, ageing studies, narrative studies in health care, and critical medical humanities.

Cao, F. 2019. Elderly Care, Intergenerational Relationships and Social Change in Rural China

Cao, F. 2019. Elderly Care, Intergenerational Relationships and Social Change in Rural China. Palgrave Macmillan.pp 199.

This book investigates how rapid socio-political-economic change in China since 1949 has affected intergenerational relationships and practices in rural areas, specifically the care provided to elderly parents by their adult children. It focuses on the lived experiences of rural villagers and their perceptions of the impact of these socio-political changes on intergenerational relationships, care of the elderly, family cohesion, and the traditional value of filial piety. It notably considers the importance of filial piety as a dominant family value, the conflict between strong family bonds and growing desires for individuality and autonomy, the prevalence of migrant work among adult children and the diversification of intergenerational practices, alongside the need for national policy and services development for residential and community-based aged care in rural China.

Christensen, Janelle. 2018. Eldercare, Health, and Ecosyndemics in a Perilous World

Christensen, Janelle.  2018. Eldercare, Health, and Ecosyndemics in a Perilous World. Rowman and Littlefield. Price: $75 (Hardcover); $71 (e-Book).

Humans are at a unique crossroads: never before have we had such a clear understanding of how our actions affect a changing climate, or how our settlement patterns along coastal environments put us at risk of rising sea levels. However, the science behind climate change (and solutions for it) are engulfed in political controversy. Dr. Christensen uses anthropological methods to illuminate the lived experience of families caring for elder relatives during climate related events: a unique conundrum facing increasing numbers of people living in coastal areas.

As populations in industrialized countries grow older, they become more vulnerable to climate extremes. People over 65 are more likely to die in climate related events, such as heatwaves, hurricanes, and blizzards. Dr. Christensen presents the scientific evidence for climate change, the archaeological record on how humans responded to climatic shifts in the past, and explains how the current challenges are different. Using the theoretical framework of Singer’s Syndemics, she explores how aging bodies are more vulnerable to increased environmental toxins, which is further exacerbated by climate fluctuations. A central question is: how do we value our environment, our elders, and make decisions about well-being throughout the life course?

Coe, Cati. 2019. The New American Servitude: Political Belonging Among African Immigrant Home Care Workers

Coe, Cati. 2019.The New American Servitude: Political Belonging Among African Immigrant Home Care Workers. NYU Press.

pp 304.

Care for America’s growing elderly population is increasingly provided by migrants, and the demand for health care labor is only expected to grow. Because of this health care crunch and the low barriers to entry, new African immigrants have adopted elder care as a niche employment sector, funneling their friends and relatives into this occupation. However, elder care puts care workers into racialized, gendered, and age hierarchies, making it difficult for them to achieve social and economic mobility.

In The New American Servitude, Coe demonstrates how these workers often struggle to find a sense of political and social belonging. They are regularly subjected to racial insults and demonstrations of power—and effectively turned into servants—at the hands of other members of the care worker network, including clients and their relatives, agency staff, and even other care workers. Low pay, a lack of benefits, and a lack of stable employment, combined with a lack of appreciation for their efforts, often alienate them, so that many come to believe that they cannot lead valuable lives in the United States. While jobs are a means of acculturating new immigrants, African care workers don’t tend to become involved or politically active. Many plan to leave rather than putting down roots in the US.

Offering revealing insights into the dark side of a burgeoning economy, The New American Servitude carries serious implications for the future of labor and justice in the care work industry.

Cohan, Deborah J. 2020. Welcome to Wherever We Are: A Memory of Family, Caregiving and Redemption

Cohan, Deborah J. 2020. Welcome to Wherever We Are: A Memory of Family, Caregiving and Redemption. Rutgers University Press. Price: $26,95 (Hardcover and e-Book).

How do you go about caregiving for an ill and elderly parent with a lifelong history of abuse and control, intertwined with expressions of intense love and adoration? How do you reconcile the resulting ambivalence, fear, and anger?

Welcome to Wherever We Are is a meditation on what we hold onto, what we let go of, how we remember others and ultimately how we’re remembered. Deborah Cohan shares her story of caring for her father, a man who was simultaneously loud, gentle, loving and cruel and whose brilliant career as an advertising executive included creating slogans like “Hey, how ‘bout a nice Hawaiian punch?” Wrestling with emotional extremes that characterize abusive relationships, Cohan shows how she navigated life with a man who was at once generous and affectionate, creating magical coat pockets filled with chocolate kisses when she was a little girl, yet who was also prone to searing, vicious remarks like “You’d make my life easier if you’d commit suicide.”

In this gripping memoir, Cohan tells her unique personal story while also weaving in her expertise as a sociologist and domestic abuse counselor to address broader questions related to marriage, violence, divorce, only children, intimacy and loss. A story most of us can relate to as we reckon with past and future choices against the backdrop of complicated family dynamics, Welcome to Wherever We Are is about how we might come to live our own lives better amidst unpredictable changes through grief and healing.

Crăciun, Irina Catrinel. 2019. Positive Aging and Precarity Theory, Policy, and Social Reality within a Comparative German Context

Crăciun, Irina Catrinel. 2019. Positive Aging and Precarity Theory, Policy, and Social Reality within a Comparative German Context. Springer Publishing. Price: $106,65 (Hardcover); $85 (e-Book).

This book explores positive aging through the lens of precarity, aiming to ground positive aging theories in current social contexts. In recent years, research on aging has been branded by growing disagreements between supporters of the successful aging model and critical gerontologists who highlight the widening inequalities, disadvantages and precarity that characterize old age. This book comes to fill a gap in knowledge by offering an alternative view on positive aging, informed by precarity and its impact on projections concerning aging.

The first part of the book places aging in broader theoretical and empirical context, exploring the complex links between views on aging, successful aging theories, policy and social reality. The second part uses results from a qualitative research conducted in Germany to illustrate the dissonance between successful aging ideals and both negative and positive views on aging as well as aging preparation strategies inspired by precarity. Findings from this section provide a solid starting point for comparisons with countries that are both similar and different from Germany in terms of welfare regimes and aging policies. The final part of the book discusses the psychological implications of these findings within and beyond the German case study and outlines potential solutions for practice.

This book provides health psychologists, gerontologists, sociologists, social workers, health professionals as well as students and aging individuals themselves with better understanding of the meaning of aging in precarious times and builds confidence about aging well despite precarity.

DeJong Newendorp, Nicole. 2020. Chinese Senior Migrants and the Globalization of Retirement

DeJong Newendorp, Nicole. 2020. Chinese Senior Migrants and the Globalization of Retirement. Stanford University Press. pp 232. Price: $90 (Hardcover); $28 (Paperback).

The 21st century has seen growing numbers of seniors turning to migration in response to newfound challenges to traditional forms of retirement and old-age support, such as increased longevity, demographically aging populations, and global neoliberal trends reducing state welfare. Chinese-born migrants to the U.S. serve as an exemplary case of this trend, with 30 percent of all migrants since 1990 being at least 60 years old. This book tells their story, arguing that they demonstrate the significance of age as a mediating factor that is fundamentally important for considering how migration is experienced. The subjects of this study are situated at the crossroads of Chinese immigrant and Chinese-American experiences, embodying many of the ambiguities and paradoxes that complicate common understandings of each group. These are older individuals who have waited their whole lives to migrate to the U.S. to rejoin family but often experience unanticipated family conflict when they arrive. They are retirees living at the social and economic margins of American society who nonetheless find significant opportunities to achieve meaningful retired lifestyles. They are members of a diaspora spanning vast regional and ideological differences, yet their wellbeing hinges on everyday interactions with others in this diverse community. Their stories highlight the many possibilities for mutual engagement that connect Chinese and American ways of being and belonging in the world.

Gamburd, Michele Ruth. 2020. Linked Lives: Elder Care, Migration and Kinship in Sri Lanka

Gamburd, Michele Ruth. 2020. Linked Lives: Elder Care, Migration and Kinship in Sri Lanka. Rutgers University Press. pp. 206. Price: $120 (Hardcover); $34.95 (Paperback, e-Book).

When youth shake off their rural roots and middle-aged people migrate for economic opportunities, what happens to the grandparents left at home? Linked Lives provides readers with intimate glimpses into homes in a Sri Lankan Buddhist village, where elders wisely use their moral authority and their control over valuable property to assure that they receive both physical and spiritual care when they need it. The care work that grandparents do for grandchildren allows labor migration and contributes to the overall well-being of the extended family. The book considers the efforts migrant workers make to build and buy houses and the ways those rooms and walls constrain social activities. It outlines the strategies elders employ to age in place, and the alternatives they face in local old folks’ homes. Based on ethnographic work done over a decade, Michele Gamburd shows how elders face the challenges of a rapidly globalizing world.

Gatta, Mary. 2018. Waiting on Retirement: Aging and Economic Insecurity in Low-Wage Work

Gatta, Mary. 2018. Waiting on Retirement: Aging and Economic Insecurity in Low-Wage Work. Redwood City CA: Stanford University Press. pp 184.

America is witnessing a retirement crisis. As the labor market shifts to the gig economy and new strains restrict social security, the American Dream of secure retirement becomes further out of reach for up to half of the population. In Waiting on Retirement, Mary Gatta takes the case of restaurant workers to examine the experiences of low-wage workers who are middle-aged, aging, and past retirement age. She deftly explores the many factors shaping what it means to grow old in economic insecurity as her subjects face race- and gender-based inequities, health hazards associated with their work, and the bitter reality that the older they get the fewer professional opportunities are available to them. More importantly, Gatta demonstrates that these problems are pervasive, as more industries adopt the worst workplace practices of service work. In light of these trends, we must consider the devastating effects on already vulnerable Americans because, as Gatta contends, this crisis does not need to be inevitable. Taking as a model the small percentage of “good” restaurant jobs that exist, she ultimately offers incisive commentary on what can be done to stave off this bleak future.

Gilleard, Chris and Paul Higgs. 2020. Social Divisions and Later Life: Difference, Diversity and Inequality

Gilleard, Chris and Paul Higgs. 2020. Social Divisions and Later Life: Difference, Diversity and Inequality. Policy Press. Price: $100 (Hardcover); $36 (Paperback and e-Book).

As the population ages, this book reveals how divides that are apparent through childhood and working life change and are added to in later life.

Two internationally renowned experts in ageing look beyond longstanding factors like class, gender and ethnicity to explore new social divisions, including contrasting states of physical fitness and mental health. They show how differences in health and frailty are creating fresh inequalities in later life, with significant implications for the future of our ageing societies.

This accessible overview of social divisions is essential reading for those interested in the sociology of ageing and its differences, diversities and inequalities.

Gramshammer-Hhol, Dagmar and Oana Ursulesku eds. 2020. Foreign Countries of Old Age: East and Southeast European Perspectives on Aging

Gramshammer-Hhol, Dagmar and Oana Ursulesku (eds). 2020. Foreign Countries of Old Age: East and Southeast European Perspectives on Aging. Transcript Verlag.

pp 400.

The exploration of what May Sarton calls the “foreign country of old age” usually does not go far beyond the familiar: the focus of aging studies has thus far clearly rested upon North America and Western Europe. This multidisciplinary essay collection critically examines conditions and representations of old age and aging in Eastern and Southeastern Europe from various perspectives of the humanities and social sciences. By shedding light on these culturally specific contexts, the contributions widen our understanding of the aging process in all its diversity and demonstrate that a shift in perspectives might in fact challenge a number of taken-for-granted positions and presumptions of aging studies.

Grenier, Amanda, Chris Phillipson and Richard A. Settersten Jr., eds. 2020. Precarity and Ageing: Understanding Insecurity and Risk in Later Life

Grenier, Amanda, Chris Phillipson and Richard A. Settersten Jr., eds. 2020. Precarity and Ageing Understanding Insecurity and Risk in Later Life (Ageing in a Global Context). Policy Press. Price: $100 (Hardcover); $33 (e-Book).

What risks and insecurities do older people face in a time of both increased longevity and widening inequality?

This edited collection develops an exciting new approach to understanding the changing cultural, economic and social circumstances facing different groups of older people. Exploring a range of topics, the chapters provide a critical review of the concept of precarity, highlighting the experiences of ageing that occur within the context of societal changes tied to declining social protection. Drawing together insights from leading voices across a range of disciplines, the book underscores the pressing need to address inequality across the life course and into later life.

Kavedžija, I. 2019. Making Meaningful Lives: Tales from and Aging Japan

Kavedžija, I. 2019. Making Meaningful Lives: Tales from and Aging Japan. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press. pp 216.

In Making Meaningful Lives, Iza Kavedžija provides a rich anthropological account of the lives and concerns of older Japanese women and men. Grounded in years of ethnographic fieldwork at two community centers in Osaka, Kavedžija offers an intimate narrative analysis of the existential concerns of her active, independent subjects. Alone and in groups, the elderly residents of these communities make sense of their lives and shifting ikigai with humor, conversation, and storytelling. They are as much providers as recipients of care, challenging common images of the elderly as frail and dependent, while illustrating a more complex argument: maintaining independence nevertheless requires cultivating multiple dependences on others. Making Meaningful Lives argues that an anthropology of the elderly is uniquely suited to examine the competing values of dependence and independence, sociality and isolation, intimacy and freedom, that people must balance throughout all of life’s stages.

Kaye, Lenard W. and Clifford Singer, eds. 2018. Social Isolation of Older Adults: Strategies to Bolster Health and Well-Being

Kaye, Lenard W. and Clifford Singer, eds. 2018.  Social Isolation of Older Adults: Strategies to Bolster Health and Well-Being.  Springer Publishing. Price: $65,00 (Paperback).

Critical strategies for confronting a dire, yet under-addressed societal epidemic—the risky and potentially deadly consequences for older adults living a socially isolated life, are the focus for this book. By documenting our current understanding of the complex and multi-dimensional nature of social isolation among elders, the authors highlight innovative and alternative forms of community and later-life relationships that can serve to forestall or prevent social isolation and loneliness.

With contributions from recognized scholars, clinicians, and elder-policy activists, as well as from multiple practice perspectives (direct service providers, administrators, researchers, and educators) the book documents the interrelated issues of social relationships and health in late life. It describes creative programs and intervention techniques that help maintain the integrity of an older adult’s individual, group, and community relations, communication pathways, and a sense of belonging. The book also illuminates multidisciplinary and integrated best practices for minimizing the risk of late life social isolation. Case studies showcase the issues that arise in clinical practice and service delivery and demonstrate proven methods for effectively addressing them.

Kleinman, A. 2019. The Soul of Care: The Moral Education of a Husband and Doctor

Kleinman, A. 2019. The Soul of Care: The Moral Education of a Husband and a Doctor. New York: Penguin Random House.

pp 272.

A moving memoir and an extraordinary love story that shows how an expert physician became a family caregiver and learned why care is so central to all our lives and yet is at risk in today’s world.When Dr. Arthur Kleinman, an eminent Harvard psychiatrist and social anthropologist, began caring for his wife, Joan, after she was diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer’s disease, he found just how far the act of caregiving extended beyond the boundaries of medicine. In The Soul of Care: The Moral Education of a Husband and a Doctor, Kleinman delivers a deeply humane and inspiring story of his life in medicine and his marriage to Joan, and he describes the practical, emotional and moral aspects of caretaking. He also writes about the problems our society faces as medical technology advances and the cost of health care soars but caring for patients no longer seems important.Caregiving is long, hard, unglamorous work–at moments joyous, more often tedious, sometimes agonizing, but it is always rich in meaning. In the face of our current political indifference and the challenge to the health care system, he emphasizes how we must ask uncomfortable questions of ourselves, and of our doctors. To give care, to be “present” for someone who needs us, and to feel and show kindness are deep emotional and moral experiences, enactments of our core values. The practice of caregiving teaches us what is most important in life, and reveals the very heart of what it is to be human.

Leibing, Annette and Silke Schicktanz, eds. 2020 (fc October). Preventing dementia? Critical Perspectives on a New Paradigm of Preparing for Old Age

Leibing, Annette and Silke Schicktanz, eds. 2020 (fc October). Preventing dementia? Critical Perspectives on a New Paradigm of Preparing for Old Age. New York/Oxford: Berghahn. Price: $145 (Hardcover).

The conceptualization of dementia has changed dramatically in recent years with the claim that, through early detection and by controlling several risk factors, a prevention of dementia is possible. Although encouraging and providing hope against this feared condition, this claim is open to scrutiny. This volume looks at how this new conceptualization ignores many of the factors which influence a dementia sufferers’ prognosis, including their history with education, food and exercise as well as their living in different epistemic cultures. The central aim is to question the concept of prevention and analyze its impact on aging people and aging societies.

Paul, Elsie. 2019. As I remember it: Teachings (ʔəms taʔaw) from the Life of a Sliammon Elder (online)

Paul, Elsie. 2019.     As I remember it: Teachings (?Əms ta?aw) from the Life of a Sliammon Elder. UBC Raven Space. (online)

Meet Elder Elsie Paul and discover her stories, family history, and teachings – ʔəms tɑʔɑw – in a multimedia, online book that captures the wit and wisdom of her storytelling.

Raised by her grandparents on their ancestral territory on the Sunshine Coast, Elsie Paul of the Tla’amin Nation spent most of her childhood surrounded by the ways, teachings, and stories of her people. As her adult life unfolded against a backdrop of colonialism and racism, she drew strength and guidance from the teachings she had learned. In As I Remember It, she shares this traditional knowledge with a new generation in an engaging style and innovative format.

With this immersive online publication, readers can learn about the Sliammon language, listen to Elsie tell her stories, and watch short animations of legends and events. They can navigate by theme – Colonialism, Community, Territory, Wellness – explore the contents through interactive maps, browse the audio and visual galleries, or make use of the instructional materials designed for teachers and students.

Pasveer, Bernike, Oddgeir Synness and Ingunn Moser, eds. 2020. Ways of Home Making in Care for Later Life

Pasveer, Bernike, Oddgeir Synness and Ingunn Moser, eds. 2020. Ways of Home Making in Care for Later Life. Palgrave Macmillan. Price: $125 (Hardcover); $ 101 (e-Book).

This is a book on how home is made when care enters the lives of people as they grow old at home or in ‘homely’ institutions. Throughout the book, contributors show how home is a verb: it is something people do. Home is thus always in the making, temporal, contested, and open to negotiation and experimentation. By bringing together approaches from STS, anthropology, health humanities and health care studies, the book points to the importance of people’s tinkerings and experiments with making home, as it is here that home is being made and unmade.

 

Offers a unique and deeply interdisciplinary contribution to open up the black box of contemporary practices and theories of home-making for the elderly and in end-of-life care

Brings together for the first time authors from various disciplinary backgrounds to investigate home in care

Provides unique perspectives on ‘home’; how it must be seen and analyzed as mediated by biomedicine’s knowledges, technologies, moralities and practices, as well as by (related) cultural imaginaries of home and aging, as well as policies of managing and financing ageing

Will appeal to students and researchers from a broad variety of disciplines: from the humanities and social sciences to health sciences and design and planning studies

Robbins, Jessica. 2020 (fc December). Aging Nationally in Contemporary Poland: Memory, Kinship, and Personhood

Robbins, Jessica. 2020 (fc December). Aging Nationally in Contemporary Poland: Memory, Kinship, and Personhood (Global Perspectives on Aging).Rutgers University Press. Price: $120 (Hardcover); $29,95 (Paperback and e-Book).

Active aging programs that encourage older adults to practice health-promoting behaviors are proliferating worldwide. In Poland, the meanings and ideals of these programs have become caught up in the sociocultural and political-economic changes that have occurred during the lifetimes of the oldest generations—most visibly, the transition from socialism to capitalism. Yet practices of active aging resonate with older forms of activity in late life in ways that exceed these narratives of progress. Moreover, some older Poles come to live valued, meaningful lives in old age despite threats to respect and dignity posed by illness and debility. Through intimate portrayals of a wide range of experiences of aging in Poland, Jessica C. Robbins shows that everyday practices of remembering and relatedness shape how older Poles come to be seen by themselves and by others as living worthy, valued lives. In Aging Nationally in Contemporary Poland, we see how memories and understandings of the Polish nation intersect with ideals and experiences of late life to produce forms of life that are not reducible to binary categories of health or illness, independence or dependence, or socialism or capitalism.

Schubert, Violeta. 2020. Modernity and the Unmaking of Men

Schubert, Violeta. 2020. Modernity and the Unmaking of Men. New York/Oxford: Berghahn. Price: $120 (Hardcover).

Responding to the renewed emphasis on the significance of village studies, this book focuses on aging bachelorhood as a site of intolerable angst when faced with rural depopulation and social precarity. Based on ongoing ethnographic fieldwork in contemporary Macedonian society, the book explores the intersections between modernity, kinship and gender. It argues that as a critical consequence of demographic rupture, changing values and societal shifts, aging bachelorhood illuminates and challenges conceptualizations of performativity and social presence.

Shea, Jeanne, Katrina Moore and Hong Zhang, eds. 2020. Beyond filial piety: Rethinking Aging and Caregiving in Contemporary East Asian Societies

Shea, Jeanne, Katrina Moore and Hong Zhang, eds. 2020. Beyond filial piety: Rethinking Aging and Caregiving in Contemporary East Asian Societies. New York/ Oxford: Berghahn books. Price: $149 (Hardcover); $39,95 (e-Book).

Known for a tradition of Confucian filial piety, East Asian societies have some of the oldest and most rapidly aging populations on earth. Today these societies are experiencing unprecedented social challenges to the filial tradition of adult children caring for aging parents at home. Marshalling mixed methods data, this volume explores the complexities of aging and caregiving in contemporary East Asia. Questioning romantic visions of a senior’s paradise, chapters examine emerging cultural meanings of and social responses to population aging, including caregiving both for and by the elderly. Themes include traditional ideals versus contemporary realities, the role of the state, patterns of familial and non-familial care, social stratification, and intersections of caregiving and death. Drawing on ethnographic, demographic, policy, archival, and media data, the authors trace both common patterns and diverging trends across China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Singapore, Japan, and Korea.

Way, Laura. 2020. Punk, Gender and Aging

Way, Laura. 2020. Punk, Gender and Aging. Emerald Publishing Ltd. Price: $89 (Hardcover).

Punk has traditionally been theorised within cultural studies and sociology as a male-dominated subculture within which women are marginalized. In line with feminist research values and epistemologies, Punk, Gender and Ageing gives voice to a previously marginalised sample: ageing punk women.

This is the first book to focus solely on the experiences of older punk women, going beyond recent scholarship on post-youth subcultural involvement which has demonstrated a limited exploration of the interplay between age, gender and subculture. Through areas such as music and dress, the author considers how ageing punk women continue to retain punk as significant in their lives.

Making a new and exciting contribution to a still developing field, this book, combining ageing, music subcultures and gender, will appeal to both students and scholars interested in subcultures as well as those looking at the sociology of gender and ageing.

Wender, Chaim J. and Patricia El. Morrison (eds). 2019. The hospice team: Who we are and how we care

Wender, Chaim J. and Patricia El. Morrison (eds). 2019. The hospice team: Who we are and how we care. Baltimore: Health Professions Press.

pp 208

This singular work offers a truly interdisciplinary team perspective on caring, presented by 21 veterans of hospice service representing the array of disciplines in effective teams—physicians, nurses, certified nurse assistants, social workers, chaplains, music therapists, bereavement counselors, a volunteer coordinator, and a volunteer of more than 26 years. Contributors share professional and personal experiences that encompass the medical, emotional, intellectual, spiritual, interpersonal, social, cultural, and economic dimensions of dying and bereavement. These are brought together through a person-centered approach that champions knowing each person being cared for to create the necessary opportunity for communication and trust that are the hallmarks of high-quality hospice care.

Edith and Eddie (2017 film, 29min)

Checkoway, Laura. Edith and Eddie. 2017. Kartemquin Films. 29 min.

Edith and Eddie, ages 96 and 95, are America’s oldest interracial newlyweds. Their unusual and idyllic love story is disrupted by a family feud that threatens to tear the couple apart.

95 and 6 to Go (2016 film, 85min)

Takesue, Kimi. 2016. 95 and 6 to Go. New Day Films. 85min.

Filmmaker Kimi Takesue finds an unlikely collaborator while visiting her grandfather Tom in Hawai’i. A recent widower in his 90s, Tom seems content to go about his daily routines until he shows surprising interest in his granddaughter’s stalled romantic screenplay. In alternately funny and poignant discussions, Kimi’s fictional love story – and Tom’s creative revisions – serve as a vehicle for his past memories of love and loss to surface.

Shot over six years, this intimate meditation on family and absence expands the vernacular of the “home movie” to consider how history is accumulated in the everyday and how sparks of humor and creativity can animate an ordinary life.

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