Gerontology

Download Agewise: Fighting the New Ageism in America by Margaret Morganroth Gullette PDF

By Margaret Morganroth Gullette

ISBN-10: 0226310736

ISBN-13: 9780226310732

Let’s face it: virtually everyone fears growing old. We fear approximately wasting our seems, our well-being, our jobs, our self-esteem—and being supplanted in paintings and love through more youthful humans. It appears like the traditional, inevitable outcome of the passing years, yet what if it’s now not? What if approximately every little thing that we expect of because the “natural” strategy of getting older is whatever yet?   In Agewise, popular cultural critic Margaret Morganroth Gullette finds that a lot of what we dread approximately getting older is de facto the results of ageism—which we will, and may, conflict as strongly as we do racism, sexism, and other kinds of bigotry. Drawing on provocative and under-reported proof from biomedicine, literature, economics, and private tales, Gullette probes the ageism that drives discontent with bodies, our selves, and our accomplishments—and makes us effortless prey for agents who are looking to promote us an illusory imaginative and prescient of younger perfection. Even worse, rampant ageism motives society to undefined, and from time to time thoroughly discard, the knowledge and adventure obtained through humans over the process maturity. The costs—both collective and personal—of this tradition of decline are nearly incalculable, diminishing our team, robbing more youthful humans of wish for an honest later lifestyles, and eroding the satisfactions and experience of productiveness that are meant to animate our later years.   when we open our eyes to the pervasiveness of ageism, although, we will be able to start to struggle it—and Gullette lays out bold plans for the complete existence direction, from educating little ones anti-ageism to fortifying the social security nets, and therefore eventually making attainable the true pleasures and possibilities promised via the recent toughness. A bracing, arguable name to fingers, Agewise will shock, enlighten, and, might be most crucial, convey wish to readers of every age.

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The analogy assumes that those others are unwanted and that society The Eskimo on the Ice Floe : 27 rather than the adult child commits the crime. And it also assumes a society of drastic scarcity so like that of “starving Eskimos” that only their alien solution will work for us. How can we be so like them? The paradox is that the United States has both world-historic wealth and rampant inequality on measures like income and health—not to mention world-historic debt. Americans do not understand the complex character of the twentieth century’s slow democratization of longevity.

Anger like theirs can be the first step of anti-ageist activism. Put into words rather than left as inchoate rage, wholesome anger can be a blessed warning and a useful tool. Yet these writers doubt that change is possible. A metaphor for the hardness of hearts, the ice floe suggests that many people do not trust their affinity groups, scientific and medical experts, capitalism, or the state to rescue us. Which groups are more vulnerable than others to ageism? The victim on the ice floe is characterized vaguely.

The rhetoric of being burdensome is loaded mainly on us. That’s a large female enclave out The Eskimo on the Ice Floe : 31 on the ice. “She just knew it was her time, honey,” as Joni Eareckson’s father said. ” I was surprised at her mentioning this, as if Social Security made retirees rich. “The average retired woman gets $890 a month,” I responded, smiling. Eight hundred and ninety dollars might not cover this woman’s Whole Foods bill. In fact, poverty among those older than sixty-five is higher than for those younger, including children.

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