Embracing Age: How Catholic Nuns Became Models of Aging Well examines a community of individuals whose aging trajectories contrast mainstream American experiences. In mainstream American society, aging is presented as a “problem,” a state to be avoided as long as possible, a state that threatens one’s ability to maintain independence, autonomy, control over one’s surroundings. Aging “well” (or avoiding aging) has become a twenty-first century American preoccupation. Embracing Age provides a window into the everyday lives of American Catholic nuns who experience longevity and remarkable health and well-being at the end of life. Catholic nuns aren’t only healthier in older age, they are healthier because they practice a culture of acceptance and grace around aging. Embracing Age demonstrates how aging in the convent becomes understood by the nuns to be a natural part of the life course, not one to be feared or avoided. Anna I. Corwin shows readers how Catholic nuns create a cultural community that provides a model for how to grow old, decline, and die that is both embedded in American culture and quite distinct from other American models.
Instructor’s Guide is available at no cost (https://d3tto5i5w9ogdd.cloudfront.net/wp-content/uploads/2021/08/26120146/corwin_instructor_guide_final.pdf).
Open access edition funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities.
The text of this book is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/