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A Long Bright Future: An Action Plan for a Lifetime of Happiness, Health, and Financial Security Hardcover – August 4, 2009


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Read an essay by Laura L. Carstensen, author of A Long Bright Future [PDF].

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Harmony (August 4, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0767930126
  • ISBN-13: 978-0767930123
  • Product Dimensions: 9.5 x 6.2 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #978,439 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

Huffington Post
“Many great minds are committed to redefining aging and retirement models that embrace this new reality. One of them is Laura Carstensen. Carstensen has been on the forefront of research on aging for nearly 30 years.”

--This text refers to the Paperback edition.

About the Author

LAURA L. CARSTENSEN, Ph.D., is one of the world's leading authorities on longevity and aging.  A professor of psychology at Stanford University and founding director of the Stanford Center on Longevity, she has won numerous awards, including a Guggenheim Fellowship. Her research has been supported for more than twenty years by the National Institute on Aging.  Dr. Carstensen lives in Los Altos Hills, California.

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Customer Reviews

This book has good content, is clearly written.
marsha gallagher
I was completely blown away with Dr. Carstensen's ideas -- what she proposes as a new way of looking at our lives and the lives of generations to come.
MBA7981
I told a fe of my friends about the book and now they want to read it, so I will be passing it along!
Deenah Ersner

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

20 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Deenah Ersner on December 8, 2009
Format: Hardcover
I just finished Dr. Carstensen's book, and I got so much out of it. What I liked most was that it was not *all* academic - real everyday people like me could clearly get the message. Although I feel that the book is more helpful to people much younger than me (I'm in my 80's), it also confirms professionally that I did much that was right to be enjoying the life I have now. Hopefully, this book will pass along some of those same lessons to young and middle-aged adults. I told a fe of my friends about the book and now they want to read it, so I will be passing it along!
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Samantha Davidson on March 15, 2010
Format: Hardcover
A good friend gave me this book for my 40th. What a perfect road map for the rest of our lives! I've always been a late bloomer, so the fact that I haven't yet hit my stride professionally depressed me -- I feel like I'm just getting started, but the traditional view of 40 is "it's all downhill from here." However, Carstensen's vision for the new, longer span gives me hope that I'm actually right on track. My job explorations and travels in my 20s + graduate school/starting a family in my 30s are just the kind of "ramping up" she argues fits "Acts 1 & 2" of our new longevity. Her vision also validates my choice to dial back on work in order to be more available when my kids are young, while allaying fears that I've made myself obsolete by going part-time. Instead of dread, I can look forward to "Act 3" when it makes sense to engage more fully professionally as kids grow independent.
This book also helps me better appreciate the re-invention I see my parents undergoing in their late 60s and to listen to what they can teach me about "Acts 4 & 5." Rather than looking at aging as nothing but loss, Carstensen paints a picture of advancing age as gain, an integration of life's experiences and a deepening of relationships that makes me (dare I say it?) -- look forward to getting older!
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By mlc1955 on December 21, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is the first time I have been compelled to submit a review of a book on Amazon. I just finished reading Dr. Carstensen's book and I am so excited to share it with others. Fortunately, I will be able to do so as I will be teaching a class entitled "Growing with Intention: Having the Life you Want after Age 40" through my local college's continuing education program starting in February 2011. Dr. Carstensen's book challenges baby boomers to change the way aging is viewed in our culture. I am so encouraged by her message. And, I am so thankful that I discovered this book just in time to share it with my students!
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Douglas P. Shadel on November 25, 2009
Format: Hardcover
Laura Carstensen's new book A Long Bright Future, is a wonderful blend of science, humor and personal stories that will appeal to readers of all ages. In a youth-centric culture where too many believe aging is synonymous with decline, Cartstensen persuasively argues that life as an elder can be filled with unbounded freedom and emotional rewards. It is a book of breathtaking intelligence and compassion from one of the top social scientists of our time. I highly recommend it. - Doug Shadel, PhD, State Director, AARP Washington.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By good taste on February 27, 2010
Format: Hardcover
Few books stay with me long after I've read them, but "A Long Bright Future" is one of them. Every part of the book is meaningful and, quite honestly, Dr. Carstensen's words have given me a much more optimistic view of the future. I make frequent reference to her ideas with those in my life, and encourage them to read this incredible book. A bonus feature is that it's easy to read and entertaining. Seth Ersner-Hershfield, Ph.D., Newton, NJ
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Marc R. Freedman on December 11, 2009
Format: Hardcover
A Long Bright Future is the most important book written about the longevity revolution sweeping over the United States and most of the developed world. Carstensen's insights challenge a raft of anachronistic assumptions about what longer lives will mean for us as individuals, and for societies. Building on these breathtaking insights she goes on to chart how we can make the most of this phenomenon, transforming the inevitable into a new source of individual and social renewal. And she manages to do so in a style that is graceful and compelling. This book should be read by anyone who wants to live long and well, and by every policy maker searching for innovations to match the new demographic landscape.

Marc Freedman, Founder/CEO, Civic Ventures
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Paul Costello on February 8, 2010
Format: Hardcover
Don't think that Laura Carstensen's engaging new book, A LONG BRIGHT FUTURE, is just for senior citizens or the elderly. It's not. It's a book for everyone. We're all living longer and the question that Carstensen poses is how will we face those facts along with the implications of greater longevity? Carsetensen's written a penetrating look at the changes we have to consider here in the U.S. and around the world as we face longer lives. I read this book as I was preparing to do a podcast with Carstensen and I was fascinated not only with the questions that this book poses for the planet but also the issues we should be thinking about as individuals. If you want to hear more about Carstensen's wise thoughts on this, [...]
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By MBA7981 on September 21, 2010
Format: Hardcover
I don't think the title of the book adequately conveys what the book contains. I was completely blown away with Dr. Carstensen's ideas -- what she proposes as a new way of looking at our lives and the lives of generations to come. As a member of the baby boomer generation, I found her ideas not only made so much sense, they have changed my outlook on how I see the rest of my life - and, more importantly, the amazing potential for humankind. Since reading the book, I have recommended it to my friends and family, and we will be discussing it at my next book club meeting, as well. My only hope is that her ideas get out there, to the leaders, educators, parents, and especially the younger generation!
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