Kimiko Tanaka and Nan E. Johnson, "Successful Aging in a Rural Community in Japan" (Carolina Academic Press, 2021)

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Kimiko Tanaka and Nan E. Johnson's Successful Aging in a Rural Community in Japan (Carolina Academic Press, 2021) discusses population aging in rural Japan and shows how rural communities have changed socially and demographically in recent years. The authors explain how rural depopulation has led to political consolidation and how the welfare system in Japan is placing more responsibility and autonomy on municipalities. Some rural towns in Japan, such as the study community of Kawanehonchō, are actively responding to the demographic challenges through programs initiated by municipal governments that reflect the interests and voices of local residents. The authors review theoretical frameworks (collective efficacy theory and social capital) to understand the inseparability of successful aging from the social and political environments of neighborhoods and communities and discuss the ongoing challenges people living in rural Japan face as populations continue to shrink. This is an interesting and important book of interest to scholars and others concerned with issues in gerontology and rural health.

John W. Traphagan, Ph.D. is Professor and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Fellow in the Department of Religious Studies at the University of Texas at Austin, where he is also a professor in the Program in Human Dimensions of Organizations.

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