Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterAcademic


This book adds, from a humanist perspective, new interdisciplinary insights and research results to the current academic debate on aging, which is predominantly biomedical and sociological. In this introductory chapter, the editors first explain the humanist perspectives from which the contributions in this volume are constructed. Essentially, humanism is understood as the pursuit of humanity in the sense of humaneness. This applies to both the humanism that people experience in their everyday lives and humanism in the sense of intellectual and artistic traditions in Western culture. Second, it is explained how, that is, under which conditions, human life can be understood and experienced as meaningful, particularly life in old age: conditions such as purpose, self-worth, connectedness with others, moral justification, certain degrees of understanding, direction and influence, and not to forget, vivid pleasure or excitement. Finally, this introductory chapter concludes with a concise overview of the other chapters.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationMeaning and Aging
Subtitle of host publicationHumanist Perspectives
EditorsJoachim Duyndam, Anja Machielse
PublisherPalgrave MacMillan
Number of pages9
ISBN (Electronic)978-3-031-55806-1
ISBN (Print)978-3-031-55805-4
Publication statusPublished - 28 Apr 2024

Publication series

NameStudies in Humanism and Atheism
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan
ISSN (Print)2634-6656
ISSN (Electronic)2634-6664


  • aging
  • meaning
  • humanism

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