by Germaine Greer, 422 pp, $24, ISBN 0-39458269-1, New York, NY, Alfred A. Knopf, 1991.
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This book is a work of art that will enlighten all readers. However, it presents a substantial amount of misinformation that is a disservice to serious readers.
The author presents extensive references to menopause, which she has collected from an enormous exploration of medical, historical, anthropological, and multicultural literary sources, and she has added to these her own impressions of women, aging, and menopause in beautiful prose that reflects her extraordinary command of the language. She explores thoroughly views of women, aging, and menopause held by different cultures in different eras and notes that menopause and aging are much less problematic for certain types of women and for women in certain societies. She addresses the heavy emphasis placed by modern societies on physical beauty and youthfulness and identifies this as a significant cause of problems in aging women, who are less valued by our own society than are younger women.
Shangold MM. The Change: Women, Aging and the Menopause. JAMA. 1994;271(5):404-405. doi:10.1001/jama.1994.03510290088047