February 21, 2020

The Routledge Companion to Health Humanities

In this volume, a global range of authors explore the history, current state, and future of the health humanities, in particular how its vision of the arts and humanities:

Promotes creative public health.
Opens new routes to health and well-being.
Informs and drives better health care.
Interrogates relationships between ill health and social equality.
Develops humanist theory in relation to health and social care practice.
Foregrounds cultural difference as a resource for positive change in society.
Tests the humanity of an increasingly globalized health-care system.
Looks to overcome structural and process obstacles to cross-disciplinary ventures.
Champions co-construction, co-design, and mutuality in solving health and well-being challenges.
Showcases less familiar, prominent, or celebrated creative practices.
Includes multiple perspectives on the value and health benefits of the arts and humanities not limited to or dominated by medicine.

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The Routledge Companion to Health Humanities Book Cover

The Aesthetics of Senescence: Aging, Population, and the Nineteenth-Century British Novel


The Aesthetics of Senescence: Aging, Population, and the Nineteenth-Century British Novel

The Aesthetics of Senescence investigates how chronological age has come to possess far-reaching ideological, ethical, and aesthetic implications, both in the past and present. Andrea Charise argues that authors of the nineteenth century used the imaginative resources of literature to engage with an unprecedented climate of crisis associated with growing old. Marshalling a great variety of canonical authors including William Godwin, Mary Shelley, George Eliot, Anthony Trollope, and George Gissing, as well as less familiar writings by George Henry Lewes, Christoph Wilhelm Hufeland, Agnes Strickland, and Max Nordau, Charise demonstrates why the imaginative capacity of writing became an interdisciplinary crucible for testing what it meant to grow old at a time of profound cultural upheaval. Charise’s grounding in medicine, political history, literature, and genre offers a fresh, original, thoroughly interdisciplinary analysis of nineteenth-century aging and age theory, as well as new insights into the rise of the novel—a genre usually thought of as affiliated almost entirely with the young or middle-aged.

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“Andrea Charise makes a substantial contribution to nineteenth-century studies and the field of aging studies.”

University of Toronto Quarterly

“In the context of Covid-19, these questions of aging, population, and demographic thinking have come into yet sharper focus and this book is a brilliant example of what the past might have to tell us about growing older together.”

Studies in Romanticism

“The Aesthetics of Senescence is a valuable, and highly original, contribution to the emergent field of aging studies in nineteenth-century literature, which enables readers to see more clearly embodied aging as a social, cultural, and national phenomenon. It shows how old anxieties of aging intensify and new ones emerge in the nineteenth century in relation to what Charise calls the biopolitics of aging, which draws on medical, scientific, economic, and ethical contexts. It is a book that will be integral to future discussions of aging in the period.”

Modern Philology