In Deep with Angie Coiro: Ashton Applewhite

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When Madonna accepted her Woman of the Year award at the Billboard Women in Music 2016 in December, she used the pulpit to decry ageism in the entertainment world. “People say that I’m so controversial,” she said “but I think the most controversial thing that I’ve done is to stick around” in a business where “to age is a sin.”

Age discrimination is a reality well beyond media and music. Silicon Valley is regularly accused of discarding its most experienced workers in favor of a younger, less expensive workforce. The concept of the elderly having hard-earned wisdom to share has all but disappeared from modern America.

In This Chair Rocks: A Manifesto Against Ageism, Applewhite traces her own journey from apprehensive boomer to pro-aging radical, and in the process debunks myth after myth about late life. The book explains the roots of ageism in history and in our own age and how it divides and debases; examines how ageist myths and stereotypes cripple the way our brains and bodies function;  describes what an all-age-friendly world would look like; and concludes with a rousing call to action.