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Fountain of Age

3.68  ·  Rating Details  ·  114 Ratings  ·  21 Reviews
Struggling to hold on to the illusion of youth, Friedan wrote, we have denied the reality and evaded the new triumphs of growing older. We have seen age only as decline. In this powerful and very personal book, Betty Friedan charted her own voyage of discovery, and that of others, into a different kind of aging.

Friedan found ordinary men and women, moving into their fift
...more
Paperback, 672 pages
Published August 1st 2006 by Simon & Schuster (first published September 1st 1993)
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Community Reviews

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Mary
Jun 22, 2008 Mary rated it it was amazing
Shelves: done
Friedan was always ahead of the curve. Her discussion of how difficult it was to find research on aging that did not involve the 'problems.' She included interesting stories from people actually trying to negotiate aging in a society that values youth.
Suzanne
Mar 06, 2014 Suzanne rated it it was amazing
This is a book which, intrigued by the title, I picked up some years ago but didn't read beyond the preface. Now, facing mandatory retirement, I picked it up again and found it inspirational. While carefully researched with many interactions with gerontologists and other "professionals" of age, the book is essentially a personal odyssey, an exploration of dealing with aging and the opening up of a whole new range of possibilities through generativity. The latter term is not a familiar one but es ...more
Anne Borrowdale
Nov 25, 2014 Anne Borrowdale rated it really liked it
An inspiring book in the true sense of the word. It got me feeling really positive about growing older. Friedan covers a lot of ground, and while it's 20 years since The Fountain of Age was first published, much of it is extremely relevant. Overlong? Yes. It's full of stories from older people living vital lives, all of which are interesting, but they're not all needed to illustrate the main points. A chapter describing Friedan's experience of an adventure holiday again feels too long for its pl ...more
Ellyn Lem
Oct 31, 2015 Ellyn Lem rated it it was amazing
When I read Atul Gawande's On Being Mortal and What Matters in the End, I thought it was a life-changing book in that he gave so much insight into how our growing older population should be treated and valued as they make decisions about the remaining part of their lives. Little did I know at the time that Betty Friedan (of legendary Feminine Mystique status) twenty year BEFORE Gawande and brought up some of the very same ideas and more. This book should be required reading for anyone post-fifty ...more
Amy Hearth
Mar 23, 2012 Amy Hearth rated it did not like it
I was disappointed by this book. It was intended to be groundbreaking but it wasn't. Also, same old elitist point of view from Friedan. (See my review of Feminine Mystique.)
Fran Linhart
thought provoking; now that I'm turning 60, I should read it again.
Lily
Apr 06, 2011 Lily rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: book-club
Okay. Some worthwhile insights from a fully lived life.
Karen
Aug 26, 2014 Karen rated it liked it
Shelves: feminism, sociology, aging
Friedan takes on a worthy project: dispelling the myth that aging means decline, detachment and decay. She's right to challenge the ageism pervasive in our society. We too often objectify older adults, even when we seek to take good care of them. We end up infantalizing them, robbing them of their personhood.

The aim of her book is a 5/5 star rating. The execution is 3/5.

She is plagued by three problems: 1) She's long winded (636 pages!). She gives an avalanche of evidence for each major claim,
...more
Frank
Oct 09, 2013 Frank rated it liked it
Shelves: on-tape
Listened to this one on tape.

Nice look at what to do about our weird obsession with not dying.

I particularly liked her call for elder care physicians to approach dying less like a disease to be cured or postponed, and more like an eventually to be managed.

Pointed out the cost issue, and the dangers of controlling costs through care, but also the necessity of this. Would like to read more on this particular part of the problem.

Ellen
Jun 10, 2010 Ellen rated it it was amazing
I like this path of thought. Just say no to medicare drugs. You are only as old as you feel and don't let anyone tell you what you are suppose to feel. It's your life, make the most of it. Age is nothing but mind over matter, if you don't mind, it doesn't matter.
Janet
Jun 13, 2014 Janet rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a must-read for anyone over 50. It's long and academic, but it is one of the most useful on aging and the good or bad choices that need to be made.
Karen Kortsch
Aug 11, 2010 Karen Kortsch rated it liked it
Very interesting look at the evolving mind of Betty Friedan. Very long book. Took forever to finish. Lots of interesting ideas on aging to contemplate.
Elizabeth Alford
May 17, 2008 Elizabeth Alford rated it it was amazing
Amazing book. A must read for those interested in thoughtful discussion on our youth-obsessed culture
Jason neese
Dec 08, 2007 Jason neese rated it really liked it
change my entire fucking perspective
on aging/the aged and geriatrics.
Diane
Dec 11, 2008 Diane rated it it was amazing
Friedan does not disappoint in this intriguing perspective on aging.
Jen
Feb 24, 2016 Jen rated it really liked it
Life changing. I want to give this book to everyone I know.
Donna
Sep 21, 2012 Donna rated it liked it
Long book with some interesting topics on aging.
Elizabeth
trade paper c 1993
Lisa
Nov 03, 2013 Lisa rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Tedious to read
Sheila
Jun 05, 2013 Sheila added it
got what I needed
Velvetink
May 16, 2011 Velvetink marked it as to-read
Shelves: women-s-studies
Silver cover. $2
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Betty Friedan was an American feminist, activist and writer, best known for starting what is commonly known as the "Second Wave" of feminism through the writing of her book The Feminine Mystique.
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