The Cultural Context of Aging
Worldwide Perspectives, 4th Edition
by Jay Sokolovsky, Editor
June 2020, 707pp, 6 1/8x9 1/4
1 volume, Praeger

Hardcover: 978-1-4408-5201-5
$101, £75, 85€, A145
Paperback: 978-1-4408-5826-0
$59, £44, 50€, A85
eBook Available: 978-1-4408-5202-2
Please contact your preferred eBook vendor for pricing.

The world population is aging rapidly. By 2050, the number of people over age 60 will have reached 2 billion worldwide.

From the laughing clubs of India and robotic granny minders of Japan to the “Flexsecurity” system of Denmark and the elderscapes of Florida, experts in this collection bring readers cutting-edge and future-focused approaches to our aging population worldwide.

In this fourth edition of an award-winning text on the consequences of global aging, a team of expert anthropologists and other social scientists presents the issues and possible solutions as our population over age 60 rises to double that of the year 2000. Chapters describe how the consequences of global aging will influence life in the 21st century in relation to biological limits on the human life span, cultural construction of the life cycle, generational exchange and kinship, makeup of households and community, and attitudes toward disability and death.

This completely revised edition includes 20 new chapters covering China, Japan, Denmark, India, West and East Africa, Indonesia, Mexico, Peru, indigenous Amazonia, rural Italy, and the ethnic landscape of the United States. A popular feature is an integrated set of web book chapters listed in the contents, discussed in chapter introductions, and available on the book’s website.


  • Takes a qualitative, case study approach, with most chapters informed by original, ongoing field research around the world
  • Draws its reputation from use in courses from anthropology, sociology, and psychology to social work, nursing, and public health at 60 universities
  • Discusses and points readers to related web book chapters, available on the book's website
  • Provides access to valuable web support offering literature updates, educational activities, videos, and more
Jay Sokolovsky, PhD, is professor of anthropology at the University of South Florida St. Petersburg. He is a cultural anthropologist with specialties in the anthropology of aging, psychological/medical anthropology, urban anthropology, the globalization of indigenous Mexico, and video documentation. He is author of articles and books including Growing Old in Different Societies, Old Men of the Bowery (coauthor), Teaching About Aging (coauthor), and Indigenous Mexico Engages the 21st Century. In 2013, he won the Textor Award for Anticipatory Anthropology for his research and creation of the first full multimedia-enabled ethnographic book in anthropology.
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