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  • Japan: home to the world’s oldest population
  • Japan: home to the world’s oldest population
    scion_cho (2008) ©
REPORT

What it really means to grow old in Japan

More than 25% of the Japanese population is over the age of 65. With a low birthrate and increasing life expectancy, that figure is only set to increase. Japan is renowned for its respectful and traditionally regimented attitudes towards seniors, but what does it really mean to be ageing now, in the world’s oldest population?

Location Japan

Scope
In tandem with its high life expectancy, Japan’s low birthrate is only predicted to see its elderly population become an increasingly dominant demographic. Currently, 25% of the Japanese population is over the age of 65, and this is on the rise. [1] But what is it really like to grow old in the world’s largest and oldest elderly population? We sat down with anthropologist Jason Danely, author of Ageing and Loss: Mourning and Maturity in Contemporary Japan – to find out.

“It has the oldest population in the world,” Danely explains. “That that’s what makes it interesting.” ...

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