2007 年 2007 巻 20 号 p. 119-130
This paper attempts to clarify a paradigm shift connected with the formation of the concept “climacteric” in the modern medicine in Germany that might have paralleled the change of the social and cultural meanings of aging and gender. It will be shown that in the medical literature a discontinuity appeared about the middle of the nineteenth century, and that the concept of “climacteric” in the modern sense as well as a new paradigm were formed in the following period i.e. in the second half of the nineteenth century. Finally it is suggested that the “birth of climacteric” was a consequence not only of the invalidation of the traditional model of human life, but also of the rising concern about the reproduction; both of them required a redefinition of women's later life.