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Ageing between gerontology and biomedicine

Moreira, T.; Palladino, P.

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P. Palladino


Over the past two decades, public interest in the basic biological processes underlying the phenomenon of ageing has grown considerably. New developments in biotechnology and health maintenance programmes appear to be forging new relationships between biology, medicine and the lives of older people. A number of social scientists describe the process as the ‘biomedicalization of aging’. In this article, we argue that contemporary biogerontology, an important sub-field of gerontology that could be construed as the primary actor in the process of ‘biomedicalization’, should be regarded instead as advancing a critique of biomedicine. We then provide a genealogy of the critique and close the argument by pointing to sources of uncertainty within biogerontology, which should be taken into account in any further studies of the relationship between biology, medicine and the lives of older people.


Moreira, T., & Palladino, P. (2009). Ageing between gerontology and biomedicine. BioSocieties, 4(4), 349-365.

Journal Article Type Article
Publication Date Dec 1, 2009
Deposit Date Dec 18, 2009
Publicly Available Date Jan 6, 2010
Journal BioSocieties
Print ISSN 1745-8552
Electronic ISSN 1745-8560
Publisher Palgrave Macmillan
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 4
Issue 4
Pages 349-365
Keywords Ageing, Biology, Biomedicine, Evolution, Governance, Medicine, Public Health.


Accepted Journal Article (318 Kb)

Copyright Statement
This paper has been published in a revised form subsequent to editorial input by Cambridge University Press in ‘Biosocieties: Moreira, T. and Palladino, P. (2009) 'Ageing between gerontology and biomedicine.', Biosocieties., 4 (4). pp. 349-365, © 2009 Cambridge University Press.

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