Reviews Book

Forever Young: A Cultural History of Longevity

BMJ 2004; 328 doi: (Published 17 June 2004) Cite this as: BMJ 2004;328:1504
  1. Peter Crome, consultant geriatrician and professor of geriatric medicine (
  1. Staffordshire

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    Lucian Boia

    Reaktion Books, £16.95, pp 224

    ISBN 1 86189 154

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    The Romanian historian Lucian Boia sees the pursuit of longevity, even to the eventual status of immortality, as a natural strategy for humankind. He cites the decline in religious belief and the afterlife, as well as the failure of secular “religions” such as Progress and Science, as key factors in the present interest in the subject.

    However, it seems a little odd to cite science's failure to provide solutions for humanity as one of the drivers of the quest for salvation through the prolongation of life—especially given medical science's record in providing many of the epidemiological explanations and treatments that have helped …

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