On Women Turning 70: Honoring the Voices of Wisdom

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"About this issue of aging, I want to make a terribly important point. People decide to get old. I've seen them do it. It's as if they've said 'Right, that's it, now I'm going to get old.' Then they become old. Why they do this, I don't know. Maybe they like to be dependent. But I do think it's terribly important that people not make that inner decision. Because then they sit around and they're old. It's easy not to do it, in fact. It's not about staying young but about not getting old."--Doris Lessing

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Overview

"About this issue of aging, I want to make a terribly important point. People decide to get old. I've seen them do it. It's as if they've said 'Right, that's it, now I'm going to get old.' Then they become old. Why they do this, I don't know. Maybe they like to be dependent. But I do think it's terribly important that people not make that inner decision. Because then they sit around and they're old. It's easy not to do it, in fact. It's not about staying young but about not getting old."--Doris Lessing

On Women Turning 70 is a celebration-of success, love, relationships, self-of life. Its sixteen intimate portraits of women in their seventies are a testament to women everywhere that life can and must be lived to its fullest. The artists, social activists, actors, scientists, journalists, academics, poets, and novelists we meet are wise, vital, and impertinent, and all are disarmingly honest. Through their stories, these vibrant women share a depth of wisdom and knowledge acquired after more than seventy years of experience and living. And they haven't stopped living yet.

Liz Smith, the acclaimed newspaperwoman, achieved her extraordinary success just as she was about to retire.

Leah Friedman started work on her Ph.D. the year before she turned seventy.

Harvard professor Elinor Gadon claims to have more energy than women forty years her junior.

Betty Friedan, the mother of the feminist movement, keeps her spirit and curiosity alive by trying something new every week.

Artist Betye Saar remarks on her colorfully dyed hair, "If I want my hair purple, it's purple."

Sociologist Lee Robbins fell in love and married again when she was seventy-five.

Just as were herprevious best-selling books on women turning forty, fifty, and sixty, this newest addition to the decade series of books from Cathleen Rountree is proof that aging is a passionate, powerful, and transformative process to be honored and celebrated. We are reminded that age is not

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
In the past, Rountree has detailed women turning 40, 50, and 60 (LJ 9/1/97); here is the latest in her series. This book's format is the same as the others: appealing photographs, a short profile, and lively interviews with 16 women who are famous (Liz Smith, Doris Lessing, Madeleine L'Engle, Betty Friedan) or merely eminent (Anna Halprin, Enola Maxwell, Lee Robins). The standard format belies Rountree's ability to get beneath the surface and quote her subjects' inspiring words on work, society, love, and aging. Although mostly white and middleclass, these women provide a varied menu of "postmenopausal zest" by living committed and useful lives. More than a coffee-table or a gift book, this is a book for inspiration and probably one Rountree often uses in her workshops and teaching.--Janice Dunham, John Jay Coll., CUNY
Booknews
Rountree (writing, film, art, and women's studies, U. of California- Santa Cruz) continues the series that so far has presented the voices and black-and-white portraits of women turning 40, 50, and 60. Here 16 women in their 70s testify that women can and must live life to the fullest. The well known among them include Betty Friedan, Doris Lessing, and Madeleine L'Engle. No index is included. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780787945121
  • Publisher: Wiley, John & Sons, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 3/12/1999
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 256
  • Product dimensions: 7.31 (w) x 9.61 (h) x 1.38 (d)

Table of Contents

Liz Smith.
Doris Lessing.
Elizabeth (Betita) Martinez.
Inge Morath.
Anna Halprin.
Ruth Asawa.
Madeline L' Engle.
Elinor Gadon.
Enola Maxwell.
Marge Frantz.
June Singer.
Mitsuye Yamada.
Betty Friedan.
Lee Robins.
Betye Saar.
Leah Friedman.
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