A bold critique of our anti-aging society and of the medical care seniors receive. . . This book, part memoir, part critique and part prescription, encourages readers to help put an end to the anti-aging industry and its profiteers, to engage in better self-care and to collectively ask the medical community to look at elderhood not as a disease.
— The Missourian
... one of the most significant books on aging and ageism in America. Elderhood should be required reading, alongside Dr. Atul Gawande’s bestselling Being Mortal...
— GBO News
...an examination of aging and the human condition encompassing poignant stories and the viewpoints of medical experts, writers, historians, and scientists. The book is beautifully written and offers countless moments of keen insight.
— Kirkus Review, Starred Review
Louise Aronson's Elderhood is a passionate, deeply informed critique ... Though the subject of this provocative book is the elderly, its message touches the entire span of human life...such a vitally important book.
Exquisitely written . . . [Aronson] advocates a new paradigm: a re-balancing act in which technology has a role but the focus returns to care. Unlike the high-tech, algorithmic march of modern medicine, her idea of truly 'personalized medicine' incorporates the patient's past experiences and current expectations. This integrative, humanistic model of geriatrics is rare. One can only hope its practices are adopted swiftly
In the latter years there are possibilities for joy, transcendence, and meaning, but also for just the opposite. Aronson writes like a memoirist while giving us scientific insight, philosophical wisdom, and wise counsel for a journey and destination we all share. Elderhood is a lovely and thoughtful exploration of this voyage.
— Abraham Verghese, author of Cutting for Stone
As Louise Aronson says, "Life offers just two possibilities: die young or grow old." This searing, luminous book is for everyone who hopes to accomplish the latter and remain fully human as they do. It will challenge your assumptions and open your mind -- and it just might change your life.
— Lucy Kalanithi, widow of Paul Kalanithi, and editor of When Breath Becomes Air
[A] penetrating meditation on geriatrics . . . Aronson’s deep empathy, hard-won knowledge, and vivid reportage makes for one of the best accounts around of the medical mistreatment of the old.
— Publisher’s Weekly, Starred Review
Mixing empathy for the whole person and fury toward the systems that undermine that, Aronson draws on published studies and scientific data, as well as numerous literary sources ... to craft this monumental book. Intimidating as it may seem, elderhood becomes welcoming and generous in Aronson's deft care.
— Shelf Awareness, Starred Review
In Elderhood, the physician-writer Louise Aronson provides an honest and humane analysis of what it means to grow old in America. Her book—part memoir, history, and social critique—is deeply sympathetic to elders and sharply critical of the “anti-aging industry” that has tried to turn being elderly into some sort of disease. I highly recommend this wonderful book to anyone who plans on growing old in this country.
— Sandeep Jauhar, author of Heart: A History
Aronson’s Elderhood is dazzling, rich with knowledge gleaned from her professional work as a geriatrician, her personal experience as a daughter, her common sense, and her thorough analysis of our social supports and cultural messaging. Her arguments are powerful, and her conclusions are revolutionary. I hope everyone who has a stake in older people, which is ultimately all of us, will read this book.
— Mary Pipher, author of Women Rowing North
In Elderhood, Louise Aronson draws on the experiences of her own life and the experiences of the many lives she has touched as a geriatrician to think about age and aging, combining the insights of science and medicine with the wisdom of literature and human history, all narrated with the practical realism of the caring clinician. It's a wise and beautiful book, to be cherished by anyone who hopes to keep on growing, aging, and learning.
— Perri Klass, MD, Professor of Journalism and Pediatrics, NYU
Elderhood is a landmark work that argues for a greater understanding and wider utilization of geriatric medicine as well as a long-overdue re-visioning of what it means to grow old. In a world of increasing numbers of older adults, Aronson’s highly readable, absorbing, and thought-provoking book should serve as a guide for how our culture must change in order to provide a future in which all of us can age well...