I am currently working on a memoir tentatively titled “After the Apogee: A Memoir of Growing Old.” To elaborate on the title’s meaning, I use a quotation from a 1991 book called A Fresh Map of Life: The Emergence of the Third Age by English sociologist Peter Laslett. He parses the human life cycle this way:

First comes an era of dependence, socialization, immaturity, and education; second an era of independence, maturity, and responsibility, of earning and of saving; third an era of personal fulfillment; and fourth an era of final dependence, decrepitude, and death.

The life career which is divided into these four modules has its culmination in the Third Age, the age of personal achievement and fulfillment, not in the Second Age and emphatically not in the Fourth. The Third Age is identified here as that during which the apogee of personal life is achieved…

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