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Successful Ageing, Spirituality and Meaning
Multidisciplinary Perspectives


Editors:  Bouwer J.

Year: 2010
ISBN: 978-90-429-2268-6
Pages: VI-284 p.
Price: 48 EURO

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After more than forty years of studying the subject matter of successful ageing, defining it from perspectives like dependence or psychological and physiological vitality, scholars have only at the end of the nineties made a specific connection between successful ageing and spirituality. This sparked off an increase in spirituality or aspects of gerotranscendence with age in quite a number of studies. Considering spirituality and/or meaning and the ongoing discussion about the predictors of successful ageing and activities associated with the baby boom generation form the background to the articles bundled in this collection.
The single thread running through this collection is that the inclusion of spirituality as an anthropological structure of humankind repels reductionism in both the study of the subject matter and the care for elderly people and opts for a moral position keeping respect and humanity in mind. The fourteen articles are thematically classified into seven categories. The categories reflect, apart from the conceptualisation of the two key concepts running through this book, the following perspectives: gerontological, psychological, sociological, anthropological, moral and theological perspectives. The authors explore the two-tiered theme of successful ageing and spirituality from different angles and make an interesting and challenging contribution to the existing corpus of publications in this field. Fundamental motives identified in the articles refer to the need of ‘balance’ in looking for the essence of ageing successfully, combining life span motives with care, considering culture as a very important parameter and to exploring mental health in relation to (theological) anthropology.

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