A Conversation with Ashton Applewhite

March 3, 2019

P R E S S   R E L E A S E

This Chair Rocks: A Manifesto Against Ageism
A Conversation with Ashton Applewhite
Hosted by Ashby Village and UC Berkeley Retirement Center

Friday, March 15, 1:00-2:30 pm
Clark Kerr Campus, Krutch Theater
2601 Warring Street, Berkeley, CA, 94720


On  Friday, March 15, Ashby Village and the UC Berkeley Retirement Center will host a spirited discussion with Ashton Applewhite, named one of PBS Next Avenue’s Influencers in Aging and author of the breakaway new book, This Chair Rocks: A Manifesto Against Ageism.

With humor and insight, Applewhite will share her own personal experiences with ageism—defined as “treating a person differently on the basis of age.”  She will talk about her work, which explores ageism’s destructive impact on individuals, our communities, and our policies.

Chronological age is often a key factor in decision-making about treatment for physical and mental health; or selection for housing, employment, or access to other opportunities, says Applewhite. Yet, she argues, age alone is a poor predictor and she pushes back on ageist assumptions that people within any given age group are all the same.  They vary substantially in their capacities−and census data show growing diversity in every age group.

Nevertheless, unfounded ageist stereotypes result in marginalization and discrimination against older people.

This Chair Rocks does not simply identify the problem. It offers a wealth of ideas about how to counteract ageism. As Applewhite explored the subject, she discovered a clear upside: “The possibility that life could be more fun in your eighties had never crossed my mind…nor that such joyful clarity would be rooted in awareness—not denial—that time was short and therefore to be savored.”

Ashby Village and the UC Berkeley Retirement Center, with their impressive track record for transforming aging in community, are pleased to present Applewhite in person, issuing her call to action for people who value innovation, interdependence, and creative options for living well whatever one’s chronological age. Ageism not only harms older people, it divides the generations.

Their hope for this event is to inspire you and to spark interest in continuing an intergenerational conversation about collaborative efforts to build a community that works well for all ages.

Register online https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSc5TdxxXzPUYCEiR-IlK-sK5sr3MXXgSqvVOdSK1oyk7TJbJw/viewform  or call the Retirement Center at 510-642-5461.

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(photo credit: Adrian Buckmaster)