This Chair Rocks: A Manifesto outlet online sale Against online sale Ageism outlet sale

This Chair Rocks: A Manifesto outlet online sale Against online sale Ageism outlet sale

This Chair Rocks: A Manifesto outlet online sale Against online sale Ageism outlet sale
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From childhood on, we''re barraged by messages that it''s sad to be old. That wrinkles are embarrassing, and old people useless. Author and activist Ashton Applewhite believed them too until she realized where this prejudice comes from and the damage it does. Lively, funny, and deeply researched, This Chair Rocks traces Applewhite''s journey from apprehensive boomer to pro-aging radical, and in the process debunks myth after myth about late life. The book explains the roots of ageism in history and in our own age denial and how it divides and debases, examines how ageist myths and stereotypes cripple the way our brains and bodies function, looks at ageism in the workplace and the bedroom, exposes the cost of the all-American myth of independence, critiques the portrayal of olders as burdens to society, describes what an all-age-friendly world would look like, and concludes with a rousing call to action. It''s time to create a world of age equality by making discrimination on the basis of age as unacceptable as any other kind. Whether you re older or hoping to get there, this book will shake you by the shoulders, cheer you up, make you mad, and change the way you see the rest of your life. Age pride!

Review

Margaret Gullette, Los Angeles Review of Books (8 June 2016) Along comes Ashton Applewhite with a book we have been waiting for. Anti-ageism now boasts a popular champion, activist, and epigrammatist in the lineage of Martial and Dorothy Parker. Until This Chair Rocks we haven’t had a single compact book that blows up myths seven to a page like fireworks. The book’s very cover — red and black and abstract, not palely representational and grayly passive — proclaims its contemporary energy. Even Applewhite’s bleached-white curls stand up energetically — they are visible in a dynamic 1:29 minute interview and in person (although we met once, it was before her age-solidarity dye job). Applewhite has a succinct story about how she personally overcame her own ageism and how charmed she is to be happier about getting older. Relief breathes through This Chair Rocks, which begins by describing her transformation brilliantly through the tale of “Not-Ray.”

Ray was a conservative white-haired man in her office, whom she discovered with panic to be her own age. She wanted to hide this from her co-workers: “They’ll think I’m old too.” That was Stage One, as she thought to herself: “I’m not Ray.” Then she started interviewing 80- and 90-year-olds, and got a “first jolt of fresh old air” about what later life was really like. “Specific concerns replaced nameless dread.” Still it was a move forward in her thinking: “I graduated to what I came to call I’m Not Ray — Stage Two: trumpet the fact that Ray and I are the same age, because see how much younger I look!” With more knowledge came Stage Three: “I’m not Ray. Ray’s going to be happy as a clam in Florida: it’s the old age he wants. I’m making my way to the old age I want, and it won’t look like his.” Rightly, for this book, age “denial” is her first target. Far from shaming people who have internalized ageism, she shows even the cosmetically “done” how to undo it. Little shots of self-help are required in a manifesto against an unfamiliar -ism.

Almost everything she thought she knew was negative and wrong, and realizing this leads her to compile the pithy, accurate information she has mastered. Many of the personal stories in This Chair Rocks come from Applewhite’s own research, a total of 50 interviews. The book is divided into small nourishing sections, like a box of oatmeal cookies. The four-page chapter detailing how happiness becomes more common after 80, for instance, which models her method. It’s a pro-aging message, and while these often seem phony, Applewhite’s changes in register, her tart commentary, and her well-chosen stories pique our curiosity, offering us first the unexpected and then the explicable. Applewhite weighs the data and presents what she finds trustworthy. “Fear does subside,” she writes. “Imagine how much more manageable the fear [of aging] would be if we become old people in training when we’re young.”
The territory the book traverses looks familiar — the brain, the body, sex, work — but I, as a co-worker in the field, still came upon material that was new, and many quotable summations. Applewhite has read canonical gerontologists and a lot of other experts. In two paragraphs she proves “the assumption that older people are inevitable money pits for health dollars is incorrect. […] People over eighty actually cost less to care for at the end of life than people in their sixties and seventies.” You, too, will marvel at the traps we, and media pundits, fall into.
People in the age biz — and “on the front line of aging policy” go wrong too. “All aging is ‘successful’ — not just the sporty version — otherwise you’re dead.” Age critics usually take a much longer way around to critique “successful aging” — for its disregard of class and disability and for raising the bar too high — or to argue against the term “the Fourth Age” — as if those who were sick or frail had less humanity than us sporty Third Agers. Her whole snarky passage about why “Western imperialism is in decline” bears reading aloud: with apologies to Alexander Pope (and all the well-meaning among us, myself included, knocking ourselves out to educate the public) it is What oft was thought, but ne’er so well expressed. The bright bulb can give serious light.
Advice is cannily dropped into the text, like chocolate drops in a cookie. In “Break a Sweat,” Applewhite explains why “frequent partner dancing” is the best exercise. “Reject age as a first-order signifier,” she writes, which for her is an unusual dollop of theory language, but it’s high-quality chocolate. We don’t, in fact, need our age to be the first fun fact about us. After disability activists answered her Facebook interchange, testifying that those who help them are actually grateful, she wrote a page about the pleasures of learning to accept help (say, carrying heavy bags). One big lick of advice, about keeping cognition going, ends “so if you knit, don’t stop at scarves; if you’re visiting a foreign country, try memorizing the phrasebook; and if you need a purpose, help me end ageism.” “Age pride” and “radical aging,” “old people in training,” are new memes to both hold onto and pass around.

Kazuki Yamada, HelpAge International (May 27, 2016)
In This Chair Rocks, Applewhite unravels the consequences of leaving ageist preconceptions unchallenged. Her sharp wit, accessible writing and strong empirical research disentangle assumptions about the aging process from the facts. At a time when misinformation and ignorance dominate, opening up this discussion is vital. The relationship between the brain, the body and aging is one of the most feared in this arena. However, Applewhite analyses the dense academic research on dementia, cognition and bodily illness with clarity. She unflinchingly concludes that "serious mental decline is not a normal or inevitable part of aging". On the prospects of a sure descent into senility, she asserts that such ideas are "not even close" to the truth.Obsessing over health isn''t healthy, she also points out. Healthy aging and chronic disease "can and do coexist" in many older people.
Sex is also tackled without blushing. She acknowledges that "nowhere is ageism more sexist, and vicious, than in the domain of sexuality", resisting the notion of the "sexless senior" with well-supported arguments. "The right to intimacy is life-long," Applewhite writes, pointing out the increasing prevalence of STDs among older populations as a consequence of denying the existence of their sexual intimacy.Issues of work and retirement are similarly scrutinized. Applewhite points out the unfortunate difficulties older people face in finding and continuing to work, despite their valuable experiences and perspectives. However, she stresses that older people should not be in a position where they have no choice but to work until the day they die.
Applewhite also examines end of life, sharing that very different thoughts occupy you when looking at death straight in the eye rather than from a distance. "Glossing over the very real challenges of late life does no one any favors, but neither does the assumption that even highly circumscribed lives are not worth living," she rightly remarks. Who are we to pity bed-ridden older people when we "grossly underestimate the quality of life that the old enjoy"? The experience of dying is very different on the inside. She challenges us to consider what older people actually want. Why do we often decide matters for them, even when it comes to how they spend the last chapters of their lives?
This Chair Rocks speaks with a force that has the capacity to change the reality of all who read it. You are never underestimated as a reader. While acknowledging the societal forces that limit individual potential, it nonetheless provides empowering suggestions through which each person can resist age discrimination. Applewhite constantly challenges the reader: what can you do, and what can we do together?
Applewhite''s book is an excellent work that speaks with powerful personal experience and a wealth of evidence. It cuts through the ignorance on age, and provides the tools with which to rebuild afterwards. Most importantly, it acknowledges that every person''s voice matters - collaboration is necessary given how ingrained ageism has become. Applewhite''s manifesto comes at a time of accelerating global ageing, and - despite its largely North American setting - is a much needed jolt to move people all over the world to join the revolution against ageism.

Jeanette Leardi, Changing Aging (April 4, 2016) No revolution springs to life overnight. It requires gestation, during which a gradual confluence of ideas and thwarted actions builds up, until the right moment when society is finally ready to encounter its full force. Such is the case with the movement to transform aging. And now we’ve reached a clear tipping point with Ashton Applewhite’s impressive and engaging work, This Chair Rocks: A Manifesto Against Ageism. It’s a book whose time has definitely come. Dedicated to Applewhite’s mentor, the pioneering pro-aging activist Dr. Robert Butler, this work sets aging’s realities against its ubiquitous myths that allow ageism to influence (infect, really) every aspect of modern life. A manifesto, This Chair Rocks declares the need to end age-based discrimination, which hinders the potential of all generations.

Writing in a crisp, vivid, and witty style, Applewhite shows us how and why our culture’s preoccupation with –– and deification of –– youth has resulted in society-wide fear and dread of life’s later years, which are actually filled with potential and opportunity for growth, if only we would be more mindful and empathetic of others, and get out of our own internally ageist way. “This punishing old/young binary –– old/no-longer-young, actually –– consigns two-thirds of us to second-class status,” she writes, “a meekly self-imposed exile to the wrong side of the velvet rope.”

To help us understand our own journeys dealing with ageism, Applewhite shares the gradual raising of her own consciousness, a process she freely admits is ongoing, as it should be for all of us. She proudly embraces the role of “Old Person in Training,” stating that the process to become one “acknowledges the inevitability of oldness while relegating it to the future, albeit at an ever-smaller remove. It swaps purpose and intent for dread and denial. It connects us empathically with our future selves.”

Never preachy, always conversational, in nine engrossing chapters, Applewhite explores ageism’s many impacts on life, including on health care, sex and intimacy, the workplace, community and housing, and at the end of life. Each argument is so thoroughly researched and clearly presented that the book should be required reading for medical students and established health-care professionals, businesspeople, aging-services providers, policy makers –– and anyone who is getting older. Throughout the book, Applewhite cheers us on as she helps us arrive at fresher, more life-affirming under-standings of what being and getting older are really about. Wrestling with our society’s insistence on the “age-as-problem” approach can feel daunting, she admits, but it’s not as intimidating and difficult as the greater challenges all of us will face if we don’t apply ourselves as soon as possible to the task of defeating ageism. As she states, “…it’s clear that upending discrimination on the basis of age will require fundamental changes in the way society is structured. We have to come up with fairer and broader ways to assess productivity, devise more ways for older people to continue to contribute, support them in these endeavors, and decouple the value of a human being from success along any of these metrics. This social change demands that we join the struggle against racism, sexism, ableism, and homophobia as well. Likewise, activists for other social justice causes would do well to consider how ageism hampers their efforts, and to raise awareness and work against it.” Abolishing ageism is a revolutionary cause whose time has come. This Chair Rocks, is its inspiring manifesto. Let’s all read the book –– and get to work.

From the Inside Flap

"Wow. This book totally rocks. It arrived on a day when I was in deep confusion and sadness about my age--62. Everything about it, from my invisibility to my neck. Within four or five wise, passionate pages, I had found insight, illumination and inspiration. I never use the word empower, but this book has empowered me." --Anne Lamott, New York Times best-selling author "Vibrant, energetic, fact-filled and funny, ''This Chair Rocks'' is a call to arms not just for older people but for our whole society." --Katha Pollitt, poet, essayist and Nation columnist "Sometimes a writer does us all a great favor and switches on a light. Snap! The darkness vanishes and, in its place we find an electric vision of new ways of living. I want to live in a world where ageism is just a memory, and ''This Chair Rocks'' illuminates the path." --Dr. Bill Thomas, founder of Changing Aging "''This Chair Rocks'' is radical, exuberant and full of all sorts of facts that erase many of the myths and beliefs about late life. As Applewhite defines and describes ageism, new ways of seeing and being in the world emerge, empowering everyone to see things as they really are." --Laurie Anderson, artist "An eloquent and well-researched exposé of the prejudice that feeds age bias, and a passionate argument to mobilize against it. This must-read book is also a fun-read for every age." -- Stephanie Coontz, author, "The Way We Never Were: American families and the Nostalgia Trap" "A knowledgeable, straight-talking, and witty book that briskly explains to anyone how-wrong-we-are-about-aging. There''s radical news here to enlighten the most "done" starlet, and ?tart turns of phrase to captivate the most expert age critic: ''All aging is "successful"--not just the sporty version--otherwise you''re dead.'' This pithy primer ought ideally to be given to every American adolescent--to inoculate them against the lies and stereotypes that can spoil the long life course they will all want." --Margaret Morganroth Gullette, author of Aged by Culture and the prize-winning Agewise and Declining to Decline "Ashton Applewhite is a visionary whose time has come, tackling one of the most persistent biases of our day with originality, verve, and humor. Her magic formula of naming and shaming may just shake all of us out of complacency and it into action. Whether you relate through being older now or recognize that aging is in your future, this is one of the most important books you''ll ever read." --Marc Freedman, CEO of Encore and author of "The Big Shift: Navigating the New Life Stage Before Midlife" "A smart and stirring call to add ageism to the list of ''isms'' that divide us, and to mobilize against it. Applewhite shows how ageism distorts our view of old age, and urges us to challenge age- based prejudices in ourselves and in society. An important wake-up call for any baby boomer who''s apprehensive about growing old." --Pepper Schwartz, Professor of Sociology, University of Washington and AARP Ambassador

From the Back Cover

"Wow. This book totally rocks. It arrived on a day when I was in deep confusion and sadness about my age--62. Everything about it, from my invisibility to my neck. Within four or five wise, passionate pages, I had found insight, illumination and inspiration. I never use the word empower, but this book has empowered me." — Anne Lamott, New York Times best-selling author

"Vibrant, energetic, fact-filled and funny, This Chair Rocks is a call to arms not just for older people but for our whole society." — Katha Pollitt, poet, essayist and Nation columnist

"Sometimes a writer does us all a great favor and switches on a light. Snap! The darkness vanishes and, in its place we find an electric vision of new ways of living. I want to live in a world where ageism is just a memory, and This Chair Rocks illuminates the path." — Dr. Bill Thomas, founder of Changing Aging

"This Chair Rocks is radical, exuberant and full of all sorts of facts that erase many of the myths and beliefs about late life. As Applewhite defines and describes ageism, new ways of seeing and being in the world emerge, empowering everyone to see things as they really are." — Laurie Anderson, artist

"An eloquent and well-researched exposé of the prejudice that feeds age bias, and a passionate argument to mobilize against it. This must-read book is also a fun-read for every age. — Stephanie Coontz, author, The Way We Never Were: American families and the Nostalgia Trap.

"A knowledgeable, straight-talking, and witty book that briskly explains to anyone how-wrong-we-are-about-aging. There''s radical news here to enlighten the most "done" starlet, and
tart turns of phrase to captivate the most expert age critic: ''All aging is "successful"--not just the sporty version--otherwise you''re dead.'' This pithy primer ought ideally to be given to every American adolescent--to inoculate them against the lies and stereotypes that can spoil the long life course they will all want." — Margaret Morganroth Gullette, author of Aged by Culture and the prize-winning Agewise and Declining to Decline

"Ashton Applewhite is a visionary whose time has come, tackling one of the most persistent biases of our day with originality, verve, and humor. Her magic formula of naming and shaming may just shake all of us out of complacency and it into action. Whether you relate through being older now or recognize that aging is in your future, this is one of the most important books you''ll ever read." — Marc Freedman, CEO of Encore and author of The Big Shift: Navigating the New Life Stage Before Midlife

"A smart and stirring call to add ageism to the list of ''isms'' that divide us, and to mobilize against it. Applewhite shows how ageism distorts our view of old age, and urges us to challenge age- based prejudices in ourselves and in society. An important wake-up call for any baby boomer who''s apprehensive about growing old." — Pepper Schwartz, Professor of Sociology, University of Washington and AARP Ambassador

About the Author

I didn''t set out to become a writer. I went into publishing because I loved to read and didn''t have any better ideas. I had a weakness for the kind of jokes that make you cringe and guffaw at the same time, my boss kept telling me to write them down, and the collection turned into the best-selling paperback of 1982. I was a clue on "Jeopardy" ("Who is the author of Truly Tasteless Jokes?"; Answer: "Blanche Knott"), and as Blanche made publishing history by occupying four of the fifteen spots on the New York Times bestseller list. My first serious book, Cutting Loose: Why Women Who End Their Marriages Do So Well, was published by HarperCollins in 1997. Ms. magazine called it "rocket fuel for launching new lives," and it landed me on Phyllis Schlafly''s Eagle Forum enemies list. It also got me invited to join the board of the nascent Council on Contemporary Families, a group of distinguished family scholars. I belonged to the Artist''s Network of Refuse & Resist group that originated the anti-Iraq-invasion slogan and performance pieces titled "Our Grief is Not a Cry for War." As a contributing editor of IEEE Spectrum magazine, I went to Laos to cover a village getting internet access via a bicycle-powered computer. Since 2000 I''ve been on staff at the American Museum of Natural History, where I write about everything under the Sun. The catalyst for Cutting Loose was puzzlement: why was our notion of women''s lives after divorce (visualize depressed dame on barstool) so different from the happy and energized reality? A similar question gave rise to This Chair Rocks: why is our view of late life so unrelievedly grim when the lived reality is so different? I began blogging about aging and ageism in 2007 and started speaking on the subject in July, 2012, which is also when I started the Yo, Is This Ageist? blog. Since then I''ve been recognized by the New York Times, National Public Radio and the American Society on Aging as an expert on ageism and been published in Harper''s and Playboy. In 2015 I was included in a list of 100 inspiring women--along with Arundhati Roy, Aung Sang Suu Kyi, Germaine Greer, Naomi Klein, Pussy Riot, and other remarkable activists--who are committed to social change.

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Top reviews from the United States

Gregory Antollino
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Age Discrimination Lawyer found this extremely insightful
Reviewed in the United States on March 6, 2017
I found this author through a New York Times editorial and was led to her website and blog, which I so thoroughly enjoyed. Is Ageism the "Last Acceptible Prejudice?" I''ve heard that said about casual anti-Semitism ("Jew him down"), casual homophobia... See more
I found this author through a New York Times editorial and was led to her website and blog, which I so thoroughly enjoyed. Is Ageism the "Last Acceptible Prejudice?" I''ve heard that said about casual anti-Semitism ("Jew him down"), casual homophobia ("that''s so Gay!"), but jokes about "I''ve fallen and I can''t get up are endemic without a second look. In my practice, I see long-term employees with good evaluations over a long period of time, suddenly deemed incompetent. I even, in one case, collected the data from the entire Board of Education of New York City and learned that statistically, teachers over 40 were more likely to be charged with incompetence than those under - and with each ten-year increase in age, the chances went up. The Court rejected the evidence because an arbitrator had accepted the testimony of the principal - a rule rejected by another part of the country. I took the case to the U.S. Supreme Court, and my brief got some notice, but was not accepted for argument. Later, the Supreme Court made it harder for aggrieved employees to sue. Local laws, like those in New York City lessen the burden, but "out with the old in with the new" is presumptively accepted in the workplace, and the employer will find a way to get rid of an employee for some reason or another. People in my position must hunt for clues - like statistical evidence - and statements and negative treatment that will allow a jury to infer ageism. This author''s book gave me so many insights (and now citations) to inferences to be made from statements and actions and I''m so glad I was surfing the web and found this wonderful and important book about fundamental human rights.
42 people found this helpful
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M. L. Baum
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Denial-shattering read
Reviewed in the United States on March 25, 2016
Having been through consciousness-raising in the late 60''s around discrimination against women, I know how it feels to have the blindfold ripped off and to see things clearly that were completely invisible before. That is what this awesome book did for me around age... See more
Having been through consciousness-raising in the late 60''s around discrimination against women, I know how it feels to have the blindfold ripped off and to see things clearly that were completely invisible before. That is what this awesome book did for me around age discrimination. It''s highly readable and meticulously researched while at the same time being trenchant and funny.

In the days since I finished reading it, I''ve been observing my own attitudes and the things that happen around me in a whole new way. I see ageism EVERYWHERE, and not least between my own ears. Many of my own actions are motivated by the desire not to appear "old", and I need to work on that.

If you hope to get old someday, read this book. If enough people do, and then take action, there might just be a chance that the world will be "older-friendly" by the time you get there.
37 people found this helpful
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AZN8TV
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
This BOOK rocks
Reviewed in the United States on February 26, 2018
This should be a must read book for everyone from age 12 to 112. Ageism affects all ages in that age range. From the time we are teens, wanting to work to make some spending money to the time we find ourselves divorced after the age of 60, ageism is a reality.... See more
This should be a must read book for everyone from age 12 to 112.

Ageism affects all ages in that age range. From the time we are teens, wanting to work to make some spending money to the time we find ourselves divorced after the age of 60, ageism is a reality. Then there is the robust 70 year old who still wants to work for whatever reason.

Ageism is like any other -ism...it''s descrimination based on age.

Remember when you were in your early teens? I do. I was so confused by the old "you have no experience" comment when applying for a job..any job. How was I to get experience???

If you are part of the younger set, you don''t have enough experience or lack the wisdom of age. This goes well into the 20''s, as I recall.

Then there''s the older set...like myself, many find themselves without a partner just at the time we thought we''d grow old gracefully together. Whether the partner who stayed home to take care of the kids or the partner who worked and finds his/her nest egg split into messy pieces.

Ms. Applewhite makes the argument that intead of using name tags, we simply use older and younger. We are ALL older than some and younger than oithers.

When we put people into groupings, we do a disservice to them as individuals.

This book speaks loudly to the concept of treating all with respect and dignity.

It''s easy to read and to understand.

I like the book so much I have made plans to travel to another state this summer to hear her speak.
15 people found this helpful
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Katy Butler
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Invigorating!
Reviewed in the United States on February 1, 2018
An easy, sensible, welll-researched, thought-provoking and inspiring read. She kept my attention all the way. I quibble with a few things -- I think she underestimates the fragility of aging bodies (75 and up) in the face of extreme forms of medical care, and sometimes I... See more
An easy, sensible, welll-researched, thought-provoking and inspiring read. She kept my attention all the way. I quibble with a few things -- I think she underestimates the fragility of aging bodies (75 and up) in the face of extreme forms of medical care, and sometimes I disagree with her use of statistics to paint a rosier picture than I think is warranted. But it''s a breath of fresh air, and made me think hard about the internalized shame that currently surrounds aging. She threads the needle, neither denying the realities of aging, nor bemoaning them, nor giving in to "90-year-old marathon runner syndrome," -- those chipper news features about exceptions to the rule.
This is an overarching book, digesting many magazine articles and other secondary sources, supplemented by her own experience and her own voice, and interviews with people who are aging well. All in all, she places the "natural transitions" of aging in a nice progressive context. I can''t wait for the next time a supermarket checker, however well meant, calls me "Young Lady," and I get the chance to tell him how proud I am of every wrinkle, and all that life has taught me. Next time I will not swallow.
14 people found this helpful
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Shannon
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
"Lightbulb Moments" on every page
Reviewed in the United States on May 17, 2017
A thousand lightbulb moments is the best way to describe this book. As you turn the pages you will think "yes, I noticed that and it made me wonder." As boomers get older there has been a glut of books on aging and most have focused on adapting to cultural... See more
A thousand lightbulb moments is the best way to describe this book. As you turn the pages you will think "yes, I noticed that and it made me wonder." As boomers get older there has been a glut of books on aging and most have focused on adapting to cultural stereotypes - slowing down, retiring, medical challenges - this is a shining gem in that stack because it is about debunking the myths related to aging, she backs up this premise with studies and facts, and she encourages people of all ages to raise our awareness of ageist behavior and call it out and question it.. Applewhite encourages you to not be defined by stereotypes - to live your life as you see fit. That might mean slowing down but it also might mean speeding up. As she notes we become more individualistic as we get older because we get to know ourselves better so why should we be influenced by a one size fits all definition of aging. The word "manifesto" is included here because it encourages activism and she gives you a toolbox full of ways to go within and to share with others. As for me she may have created a monster because as I got older I noticed more and more that the "standard definition" and stock photos of greying elders looking into the sunset had nothing to do with my life and I started to overtly question overt ageist content across media and culture in general and our profit generating obsession with "youth." I would give this book 10 stars if I could. Whether you are 12 or 102 this should be on your mandatory reading list.
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Sam Katz
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
An Incredibly Important Book -- at Any Age
Reviewed in the United States on February 1, 2019
Ashton Applewhite’s incredibly important book, This Chair Rocks: A Manifesto Against Ageism, should be required reading for just about everyone. If you think that’s an exaggeration, think again. There are three things every person experiences: birth, life, and death. That’s... See more
Ashton Applewhite’s incredibly important book, This Chair Rocks: A Manifesto Against Ageism, should be required reading for just about everyone. If you think that’s an exaggeration, think again. There are three things every person experiences: birth, life, and death. That’s it. There’s only one trajectory for everybody on the planet and there’s nothing we can do — or should want to — to alter it. As my sister said as my 95-year-old mother lay dying: “None of us is getting out of here alive.”

No, we’re not. And since none of us knows what our life span will be, why shouldn’t we get to where we’re all going as comfortably, as self-sufficiently, and as joyfully as possible? We should, but it hasn’t been easy to do in a culture that devalues us as we age, because the last acceptable American “ism” is ageism. It’s Applewhite’s stated mission to radicalize us to rise up against it, fight it, and conquer it. Just as society undertook the fight in the 20th century against every other “ism”— racism, sexism, anti-Semitism, and homophobia — it’s time, in this 21st century, to battle ageism.

And Applewhite gives us the factual tools to do so. Through scholarly, but entertaining, research, she debunks the myths about age that have held our society hostage by those who have a vested, corporate, financial interest in our devaluation: from beauty companies and the entertainment industries that dishonors our bodies and our looks, to a health care system financially exorbitant to navigate and financed by powerful pharmaceutical hucksters.

Unlike far eastern cultures where the elderly are declared “national treasures,” Western culture denigrates what, in reality, both on and off the job, is our increased wisdom, experience, talent, and knowledge. Applewhite proves that we have the ability to enjoy and live as fulfilling lives in our later years as we did in our youth. This book will shock you into recognizing just how hideously propagandized we have been to feel otherwise. It’s time we put a stop to the false narratives and honored ourselves in every moment. Applewhite has started this battle. Read her book and join the fight for what is everyone’s right to live every year of life with dignity, happiness, comfort, and a rockin’ sense of self-worth. Every book you buy is an intellectual investment: there is no investment more worthwhile than the one you make in yourself.
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Robert Shaver
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Beyond ageism - the author will stimulate your thoughts about life, work, sex, health and death
Reviewed in the United States on August 27, 2016
I am grateful that so many took the time to share their observations and opinions. The earlier reviews have summarized the book well. They persuaded me to read this book. So, I will limit my contribution to just a few thoughts the author triggered for me.... See more
I am grateful that so many took the time to share their observations and opinions. The earlier reviews have summarized the book well. They persuaded me to read this book. So, I will limit my contribution to just a few thoughts the author triggered for me.

"What is the hardest prejudice to let go of? A prejudice against myself - my own future, older self - as inferior to my younger self. That''s the linchpin of age denial." (p. 7) Our mindset is critical. How much time and energy are we investing in reliving our past relative to our investment in creating our future?

"It turns out that it''s very hard to estimate the value of work before we lose it." (p.166) Agree. It has been five years since I retired. I am a recovering workaholic. I still struggle for purpose, meaning and structure. However, I think that the millennials are better at finding balance in their lives. I also believe that their relationships with their spouses and children will be better for it. Hopefully, their transition to retirement might be much easier.

The author shares a Mexican saying - The appearance of the bull changes when you enter the ring. The matador sees the bull very differently than the spectators. The life force is very strong. (p. 210) I have struggled with my End of Life Directive for some time. Now, I better understand why I struggle.

In summary, a very worthy investment of your time. I strongly recommend this book.
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Elizabeth
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
An eye-opening book, well worth a read
Reviewed in the United States on April 22, 2016
First, the stars. I only give 5 stars to things I consider all-time literary masterpieces, so 4 stars is pretty much my top rating for anything in this genre. In other words, I thought this book was great. Reading This Chair Rocks (love the title), I was... See more
First, the stars. I only give 5 stars to things I consider all-time literary masterpieces, so 4 stars is pretty much my top rating for anything in this genre. In other words, I thought this book was great.

Reading This Chair Rocks (love the title), I was surprised at how much internalized ageism I uncovered. I hadn''t ever really thought about ageism as a thing, except in terms of job discrimination, which is fairly obvious. By the time you are halfway into this book you will not doubt that it is a thing. A very big thing, that takes a toll on our health and happiness throughout our lives, whether we are experiencing ageist attitudes from others or imposing them upon ourselves. The book is well-written, funny, and thought-provoking, and I had quite a few aha! moments where Applewhite made an observation or analysis that resonated with me but that I''d never consciously considered before.

I''m seeing the world in a new way since reading this book, and I plan to give copies to friends and family, because the more people who begin to think differently about the process of aging, the better for all of us. Highly recommended.
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Top reviews from other countries

granny smith
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
the wit and the sheer truth of Ashton Applewhite’s writing a joy – and an education
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on April 18, 2016
The author – and the main audience -may be American but this remarkable book should be read by anyone who has been affected by ageism – and that means most of us. In a western culture dedicated to youth the idea of growing older is feared and denied. As an 85-year-old...See more
The author – and the main audience -may be American but this remarkable book should be read by anyone who has been affected by ageism – and that means most of us. In a western culture dedicated to youth the idea of growing older is feared and denied. As an 85-year-old Englishwoman I found the energy, the wit and the sheer truth of Ashton Applewhite’s writing a joy – and an education. Am I – was I – ageist? Yes! I now boast about my age, especially as only last year I published to flattering reviews a Memoir of my first three decades, but when I was first eligible for a Senior Railcard I dreaded using it in public. My body is beginning to let me down, but I was ill as a child and no-one assumed it was simply because of my age. This Chair Rocks is very fully researched but is reader-friendly for the non-academic. It has been hailed in the USA as ‘The new Betty Friedan, a book whose time has come.’ Whatever your age, read it, give it to your children, your grandchildren, the stranger who assumes you are helpless. You – and they – will not be disappointed.
5 people found this helpful
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Advantages of Age
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Required reading for both youngsters and ''olders''!
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on October 28, 2017
This books should be essential reading for both youngsters and ''olders''. Ashton Applewhite successfully dissects and challenges many of the assumptions we commonly make about what it means to be old and the often unspoken prejudice of older people. I found myself...See more
This books should be essential reading for both youngsters and ''olders''. Ashton Applewhite successfully dissects and challenges many of the assumptions we commonly make about what it means to be old and the often unspoken prejudice of older people. I found myself questioning my own attitudes about ageing. What makes it even more appealing is that the book is not written in academic speak but in a style that is immediately accessible and, yes, even funny at times too! I sincerely hope this book achieves the sales it so richly deserves.
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marion
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Good
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on November 29, 2017
A present for my sister. Trying to read without bending it - it looks really good!
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Amazon Customer D T Joseph
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
For all above 45
Reviewed in India on May 21, 2017
I like the perception of old age, as society now sees it, and how it should. Bringing age on - more or less - the levels of race and gender to avoid discrimination is important, and the book opens the door towards it. Also, the values that the old can and do bring to life,...See more
I like the perception of old age, as society now sees it, and how it should. Bringing age on - more or less - the levels of race and gender to avoid discrimination is important, and the book opens the door towards it. Also, the values that the old can and do bring to life, and the contributions they can make deserve to stressed more and more, as this book does.
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Rudolfo
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Important book to read.
Reviewed in Canada on January 1, 2021
All older adults should read it.
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