224 pages, 6 x 9
Killing the Elderly
By Mike Brogden
Jessica Kingsley Publishers
'Overall, the book provides a valuable insight into attitudes to and perceptions of older people. It is especially helpful to have a rigorously researched sociological text that covers the interplay between societies and the killing older members who have contributed, developed and supported those societies. Its usefulness to the literature on abuse is clear... I would recommend this book to readers.'- Journal of Elder Abuse & Neglect'This book goes beyond the abuse of the elderly, and "is about, bluntly, the killing of old people" (p.11). For sociologists, criminologists, social workers and carers of the elderly, this book is well worth reading as it is thought provoking and therefore refreshing.'- International Journal of the Sociology of Law'This is a thought-provoking book. It uses a variety of strategies to forward its central thesis: older people have always been regarded as a residual group by other members of society presumed to be more productive This book is a good read and has an important point to make.'- European Journal of Social Work'This book addresses elderly homicide and euthanasia, and puts it in a historial and social context. Mike Brogden provides a useful and appropriate critique on the concept of geronticide. The book does assist with the urgency of the need for a major cultural shift in the way we perceive and treat the elderly.'- International Journal of the Sociology of Law'This dramatically titled book is a powerful one... Geronticide is a modern term but the concept is ages old. Brogden takes us via history, literature, science, religion, demography, economics, sociology, anthropology, social history and the law... This is not a book for holiday packing but a potent one to remind us of the pervasive and pernicious influence of ageism; society's and our own.'-International Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry'Mike Brogden's book on geronticide is both thought-provoking and an eye-opener. His work is a comprehensive study into one of the greatest and most difficult challenges facing our modern world. How will our society cope with the rapidly growing population of the oldest old, and the care for the increasing numbers of old, seriously ill and dying people. The book deals with the sociological, anthropological and literary aspects, revealing the fact that killing older people, on either a voluntary or involuntary basis, has been a theme throughout history... My sincere wish is that this very powerful and useful book should reach all the politicians, administrators and others involved in planning the future with regards to older people, all over the world, in the hope that it would enable us to understand the serious consequences our decisions may have for a very valuable but vulnerable group of still equally worthy members of our society.'- British Journal of Social Work'We live in a different world after Harold Shipman. The trial and the resulting public anxiety about trust in professionals has meant that the deliberate and systematic killing of older people is no longer seen as remote or part of other societies. Mike Brogden's overview of the subject starts and finishes with Shipman, but his main discussion explores how geronticide has been and continues to be a feature of "care" for the aged... This book, then, is compelling on its' level of sweeping themes and illuminating in its' often harrowing reports of individual abuse and death. It may also encourage further reading on this subject. At a time when the National Service Framework has made strong calls for anti-ageist values, this book provides evidence of the excess of ageism.'- Community CareThe increasing elderly population poses many economic and ethical questions for modern society. One of the most topical and controversial of these is the debate about euthanasia. Drawing on a variety of historical, contemporary, anthropological and literary sources, this book considers the present day debates about the sanctity of elderly lives and the question of euthanasia. The book shows that killing the elderly, voluntarily or involuntarily, has been a feature of many societies, from the primitive to the present day. Elderly homicide and euthanasia today are most commonly concealed in the home or the care institution, a situation which is attracting increasing professional concern. Geronticide: Killing the Elderly seeks to place the current debate in a wider historical and social context, while providing a comprehensive overview of current academic and professional concerns. This thorough, authoritative book will be a useful, thought-provoking read for anyone involved in working with the elderly.
Mike Brogden is a professor of Criminal Justice at the Queen's University of Belfast. He has recently conducted varied original work on crimes of private space - elder, spouse and child abuse work.
Introduction. 1. Living too long? 2. Death by Demography and Longevity. 3. Death by Social Obligation - The Political Economy of Geronticide. 4. Death by Attrition - Modernisation and the Workhouse. 5. Death by Degrees - Bureaucratisation in Care Institutions. 6. Death in Literary Discourse. 7. Dr. Shipman, Social Rights and Preventing Geronticide. References. Index.
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