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Literature and Aging

An Anthology

Martin Kohn Carol Donley

456 pages
The Kent State University Press
Some of the world’s greatest literature is devoted to expressing the joys and sorrows humans experience as they grow old. New opportunities and challenges appear: retirement, a special closeness with the family, failing health, the recognition of personal mortality, prejudice against the elderly, and grief over the losses of loved ones and places. This collection of more than 60 short stories, poems, and plays addresses these issues primarily through the works of modern American writers, including Bernard Malamud, Eudora Welty, Saul Bellow, Edward Albee, Robert Frost, Denise Levertov, William Carlos Williams, Ernest Hemingway, Alice Walker, Kurt Vonnegut, and others. The selections represent the experience of aging from the perspective of persons of diverse color, ethnicity, and background, and are complemented by illustrator Elizabeth Layton’s wry and perceptive prints.
Author Bio
Martin Kohn is cofounder and senior associate for Program Development, Center for Literature, Medicine and Biomedical Humanities at Hiram College. He previously directed the Human Values in Medicine program at Northeastern Ohio Universities College of Medicine. His poetry has appeared in numerous print and electronic journals.

Carol Donley is Andrews Professor of Biomedical Humanities and cofounder of the Center for Literature, Medicine and Biomedical Humanities at Hiram College. With Martin Kohn, she coedits the Literature and Medicine series at the Kent State University Press. Retired from full-time teaching, she continues to teach a few courses in the Biomedical Humanities program at Hiram.