On Aging and Old Age Cover Image

Despre îmbătrânire şi bătrâneţe
On Aging and Old Age

Author(s): Ion Vianu
Subject(s): Cultural Essay, Political Essay, Societal Essay
Published by: Institutul Cultural Român
Keywords: eternal youth; aging; old age; fourth age; Lucas Cranach; taedium vitae; old age as illness; Confucius; King Lear; C.G. Jung

Summary/Abstract: Old age is a reality that people both dread and look forward to. A society in which rejuvenation and eternal youth become possible is a distopian and monstruous world. The social, cultural and economic consequences of such a possibility are grim. While old age is an illness, to reject this illness is an illness in itself. Life is a race between dying of various illnesses and Alzheimer (which means the end of intelligence). How does society make use of its old people and how do old people make use of society? Is the generation gap an attribute of modern times? Is wisdom the attribute of old age. Yes, as long as the old man keeps his distance, which also means perspective. What are the other attributes of old age? There is a certain dynamics of old age and the possibility of surprises is given by the immediate uncertainty of the future. The “fourth age” is a blessing when it has been reached after a life of plenitude and integrity.

  • Issue Year: 2007
  • Issue No: 61
  • Page Range: 54-57
  • Page Count: 4
  • Language: Romanian