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Making meaningful lives: Tales from an aging Japan

Making meaningful lives: Tales from an aging Japan 112 BOOK REVIEWS Making meaningful lives: Tales from an aging Japan, by Iza Kavedžiji, Philadelphia, University of Pennsylvania Press, 2019, 216 pp., $45,00 (hardback), ISBN: Making Meaningful Lives is a carefully conducted and beautifully written ethnography about existential human questions: what is a meaningful life and how can we lead it? Iza Kavedžiji explores these questions through the narratives of elderly people living in Osaka, Japan. In so doing, she adds a fresh and new perspective to the preponderance of literature on aging (in) Japan: she shifts the focus from highly problematizing perspectives on aging (and suffering) in the context of demographic change to living and aging joyfully. Her study, which is based on her dissertation, draws on fourteen months of fieldwork in two community salons in down- town neighbourhoods. Large parts of the book unfold around the tales of her interlocutors – mostly recounted in the third person. Her interlocutors, whom she also calls “older friends” (3), “the elderly” (5) and “companions” (163), were mostly in their sixties to early nineties; two thirds were women (69). The book consists of eight chapters, most of which start with a vignette. After introducing the central concepts of care and companionship http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Contemporary Japan Taylor & Francis

Making meaningful lives: Tales from an aging Japan

Contemporary Japan , Volume 34 (1): 3 – Jan 2, 2022

Making meaningful lives: Tales from an aging Japan

Abstract

112 BOOK REVIEWS Making meaningful lives: Tales from an aging Japan, by Iza Kavedžiji, Philadelphia, University of Pennsylvania Press, 2019, 216 pp., $45,00 (hardback), ISBN: Making Meaningful Lives is a carefully conducted and beautifully written ethnography about existential human questions: what is a meaningful life and how can we lead it? Iza Kavedžiji explores these questions through the narratives of elderly people living in Osaka, Japan. In so doing, she adds a fresh and new...
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Publisher
Taylor & Francis
Copyright
© 2020 Nora Kottmann
ISSN
1869-2737
eISSN
1869-2729
DOI
10.1080/18692729.2020.1816270
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

112 BOOK REVIEWS Making meaningful lives: Tales from an aging Japan, by Iza Kavedžiji, Philadelphia, University of Pennsylvania Press, 2019, 216 pp., $45,00 (hardback), ISBN: Making Meaningful Lives is a carefully conducted and beautifully written ethnography about existential human questions: what is a meaningful life and how can we lead it? Iza Kavedžiji explores these questions through the narratives of elderly people living in Osaka, Japan. In so doing, she adds a fresh and new perspective to the preponderance of literature on aging (in) Japan: she shifts the focus from highly problematizing perspectives on aging (and suffering) in the context of demographic change to living and aging joyfully. Her study, which is based on her dissertation, draws on fourteen months of fieldwork in two community salons in down- town neighbourhoods. Large parts of the book unfold around the tales of her interlocutors – mostly recounted in the third person. Her interlocutors, whom she also calls “older friends” (3), “the elderly” (5) and “companions” (163), were mostly in their sixties to early nineties; two thirds were women (69). The book consists of eight chapters, most of which start with a vignette. After introducing the central concepts of care and companionship

Journal

Contemporary JapanTaylor & Francis

Published: Jan 2, 2022

References