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Wise Women: A Celebration of Their Insights, Courage, and Beautyby Joyce Tenneson
Synopses & Reviews
Many of us fear growing older. We often assume that advanced age is a time of degeneration, when physical and mental qualities are in sharp decline. In her new book Wise Women, Joyce Tenneson challenges and dispels this negative attitude by portraying women of energy, vitality, wisdom, and deep beauty. These are women whom age has enhanced, not hindered, and whose lives can serve as positive role models for us all.
Tenneson photographed and interviewed nearly three hundred women and traveled from Maine to California, to discover how the third phase of life looked and felt. The author's goal was to show as wide a cross-section of women as possible, from age sixty-five to one hundred — the time regarded by most as retirement age. From beautician to Supreme Court Justice, from volunteer teacher to Academy Award winning actress, these stunning portraits and short interviews turn all of the negative stereotypes associated with growing older as a female on their heads. Wise Women is nothing short of a revelation. Each portrait is compelling in its own way — some are poignant and moving, while others are humorous. All show us a new vision of what it means to be a female elder in our present society.
Tenneson says, "I had no idea what I was going to find when I embarked on this book project. During the two years of full-time travel, photographing and interviewing my subjects, I myself was transformed. I no longer fear getting older." Her mission now is to change the perception of the general public — helping them view older women in a more positive light.
The women featured in Wise Women are all beautiful in their own fascinating ways — but Tenneson makes no attempt to make them look "young." The message from Wise Women is clear. Women should not fear getting older — there is a new kind of beauty that emerges with age that is equally compelling in its own right.
Tenneson's passion for her subjects is infectious. She is an articulate and eloquent speaker, and as she shows each portrait, she gives us rare insights into the hearts and minds of her subjects.
In ancient times older women were the keepers of primal mysteries and were revered for their special wisdom: today there is a feeling that our culture is reawakening to the power of our elders. Joyce Tenneson presents 80 portraits of women aged 65 to 100, who comment on their experiences of ageing.
In ancient times, older women were the keepers of primal mysteries and were revered for their special wisdom. For this very special book, Joyce Tenneson traveled throughout America to photograph and interview women ages 65 to l00. What she found was a revelation — women who were vital, energetic, and deeply beautiful, inside and out. The 80 portraits are of women from all walks of life from the famous, such as Sandra Day O'Connor, Julie Harris, and Angela Lansbury, to the ordinary, such as our mothers and grandmothers. Tenneson's compelling and compassionate portraits, accompanied by short poignant statements from these remarkable women about the experience of aging, will help to reawaken us to the power and wisdom of our elders.
About the Author
Joyce Tenneson is one of the most celebrated photographers of our time. She is the author of six books, including Light Warriors (Bulfinch, 2000), and her work has appeared in countless publications. Tenneson has had more than 150 exhibits in galleries and museums worldwide, and she is a respected lecturer and speaker. She lives and works in New York City.
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