Art Of Midlife / Edition 1

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Overview

The subject of midlife has been dominated by the woes of aging—menopause, divorce, hormone replacement therapies, aging parents, and fleeing children. Now a broad-ranging new work by clinical psychologist Linda N. Edelstein, Ph.D., The Art of Midlife, describes the freedom and authenticity that can be made a cornerstone of the middle years. She describes three healthy and predictable phases. First, women relinquish old ways, untying themselves from the past and mourning the losses of youth and its illusions. By placing less emphasis on the needs of others, women can live more creatively and enjoy the present. The women Dr. Edelstein studied have been able to move to the next step, in which they reconnect to themselves. They regain their authentic voices, simplify life, and allow long buried aspects of themselves to emerge. Finally, women refocus their futures. With courage, they embrace new people, ideas, activities, and work—and pursue adult dreams regardless of external rewards.

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Although much has been written about midlife and the psychological changes that happen with it, most of what is published has focused on studies of men. Edelstein, a clinical psychologist, here focuses exclusively on women. Although somewhat aimed at the self-help crowd, this book is a more serious look at the psychology of midlife and how women have successfully dealt with it. The book is divided into three parts--"Relinquish the Old," "Reconnect to the Self," and "Refocus the Future"--and uses interviews with women who have creatively and happily moved into the second half of their lives by relinquishing, reconnecting, and refocusing. This book will be disappointing to readers looking for a quick fix but will enlighten those interested in learning more about this stage of a woman's life.--Elizabeth Caulfield Felt, Washington State Univ. Lib., Pullman Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.
Booknews
A clinical psychologist shifts the focus of women's midlife from such horrors as menopause and empty nests to the freedom and authority that is possible. She identifies three healthy and predictable phases: relinquishing and mourning old ways, regaining authentic voices and simplified lives, and refocusing the future to embrace long-buried aspects and new people and goals. Distributed in the US by Greenwood Press. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknew.com)
From the Publisher

"The author provides and excellent review of the tasks and opportunities inherent in the middle years of a woman's life. She uses an elegant theoretical model to describe the process of change at this stage and richly illustrates it with numerous clinical vignettes and marvelous literary references, chosen with particular aptness that makes them linger in the reader's consciousness….Written in a user-friendly manner, the book is not only a valuable resource in terms of providing information and validation to midlife women, but is also a useful tool for those male clinicians still pondering what a woman wants. Finally, it is well indexed and has a comprehensive, diverse, interesting bibliography that encourages rather than overwhelms."

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Bulletin of the Menninger Clinic

"Dr. Edelstein, in her excellent book…describes midlife as a complex internal process for women dealing with claiming their own creativity and letting go of impediments….I recommend this book…as it voices poetically and accurately complex tapestries of midlife growth and change."

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Voices: The Art and Science of Psychotherapy

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780897895804
  • Publisher: ABC-Clio, LLC
  • Publication date: 4/30/1999
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 230
  • Lexile: 1130L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 6.14 (w) x 9.21 (h) x 0.56 (d)

Meet the Author

LINDA N. EDELSTEIN, Ph.D., is a writer and clinical psychologist in private practice in Illinois, and an Associate Professor at the Chicago School of Professional Psychology in Chicago. She lives in Evanston, Illinois and has two daughters.

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
Introduction 1
Pt. I Relinquish the Old 5
1 "Freedom Is Daily, Prose-Bound, Routine Remembering": An Overview of Midlife Creativity 7
2 "The Terrible Weight of All This Unused Life": Relinquish the Old 17
3 "Glowing Coals under Grey Ashes": Midlife 31
4 "First It Was in Black and White, and Then It Was in Color": Creativity and Insight 49
Pt. II Reconnect to the Self 71
5 "She Must Braid Us All Together": The Psychology of Women 73
6 "I Am Her Only Novel": Relationships with Parents and Their Dreams for Us 91
7 "There's Still So Much I'd Like to See": How We Are Formed by Social Forces 99
8 "Once You Are Real You Can't Be Ugly": Authenticity 111
9 "Finding a Fortune in the Lining of an Old Coat": Aggression and Creativity 125
10 "The Long Meandering Fingers of Ice Will Thicken": Problems in Creative Living 143
Pt. III Refocus the Future 159
11 "Life Shrinks or Expands in Proportion to One's Courage": Finding Courage 163
12 "Don't Dream It, Be It": Turning Points 171
13 "I Have a Brain and a Uterus and I Use Both": Women and Work 181
14 "Let the Beauty You Love Be What You Do": Achievements and Dreams 191
Epilogue 201
Bibliography 203
Index 211
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