Project: Research project

    Project Details


    It is commonly believed that the longer individuals have lived, the more aware they become of their age. Furthermore, many people tend to view milestone birthdays as indicators of aging progression. With each passing decade, men and women become increasingly mindful of their own aging process and the proximity to death. This heightened age awareness is shaped by culture, which is universal but also influenced by factors such as race, class, gender, temporality, and geography.
    This proposed project aims to conduct original research by exploring previously under-tapped source materials to investigate how older adults in the final dynasty of China, which had the largest aged population during the imperial period, responded to the experience of continuous aging. The extensive collections of writings from men and women in the Qing Dynasty will serve as a major resource for conducting a historical study on various approaches to aging, as reflected in the authors’ choices of either counting up or counting down, reflecting on the years or decades that have passed or looking ahead to their remaining days, depending on individual life expectancy.
    By contrasting the mindsets of “time passed” and “time remained,” this project aims to analyze the inner emotions of numerous writers, shed light on the ways in which individuals in the Qing Dynasty grappled with the concept of aging, give a voice to the elderly individuals whose stories have often been overlooked in historical narratives, and provide a historical context for discussions on the current demographic landscape in China.
    StatusNot started
    Effective start/end date1/01/2531/12/27


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