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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: David O. Staats, MD (University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center)
Description: This is a multiauthored book on the concept of "productive aging" based on a conference of leading gerontologists.
Purpose: The purpose is to summarize the development of the concept of "productive aging" and show what the current state of affairs is regarding this concept from the vantage point of several academic disciplines. These are worthy objectives, given the burgeoning population. Will the baby boomers retire and what will they do in their later years are questions worthy of study.
Audience: The audience is mainly geontologists; geriatricians will find it of use also. The contributions are all from outstanding leaders of the field.
Features: The deft editing here weaves together a number of approaches to the concept of "productive aging" including historical, biomedical, psychological, sociological, economic and policy perspectives. Each essay could stand by itself; here the integration and pagination of the presentations weaves the concept with panoramic splendor. It is the conceptualizations and the clarity and depth with which they are expressed that gives this work a high quality.
Assessment: This book will find most of its audience among the social gerontologists, but can be read by practitioners with merit. The concepts here are presented in such a clear and logical manner, that as bibliographic essays they could stand alone. There is more here, however, and many trainees could be stimulated by this excellent work to creative thinking. The editing here is outstanding. This is one of a series on gerontology by the publisher.