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Defining Quality Of Life Essay

1219 words - 5 pages

) The concept of quality of life has travelled from being a shorthand term encompassing the political aims of the ‘Great Society’, through a period of intense social scientific formalism at both individual and population levels, back to its original status as an all-pervasive ‘political and media catchword’ (Cummins, 1997b). In the process the concept has developed a double life: the term ‘quality of life’ has come to index, simultaneously, collections of a bewildering array of ‘indicators’ of the quality of living conditions within the nation state, and also the ‘output’ of automatic brain states. Like psychology, the discipline from which the most influential formulations of QOL as an individual attribute have come, the idea has a short history, but a very long past. Again like psychology, QOL is an idea which clearly has a robust future, even if the contours of that future are both politically contentious and, presently, opaque.
Happiness; life-satisfaction; well-being; self-actualization; freedom from want; objective functioning; ‘a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being not merely the absence of disease’ (WHO, 1997) balance, equilibrium or ‘true bliss’ (Kant, 1978) prosperity; fulfillment; low unemployment; psychological well-being; high GDP; the good life; enjoyment; democratic liberalism; the examined life (pace Socrates); a full and meaningful existence (Sheldon, 2000). Not only are all of these terms used in the literature in discussions of what constitutes (a) ‘quality of life’ but it is difficult if not impossible to reconcile them. It is difficult to better the contention of Cummins et al. (in press) that:

Quality of life encompasses the basic conditions of life such as adequate food, shelter, and safety plus life enrichers such as Inclusive, social leisure and community activities .these enrichers are based on the individual’s values, beliefs, needs and interest (Shalock and Parmenter, 2007)

(WHOQOL, 1993) defined quality of life as individual perception of their position in life in context of culture and value system in which they live and in relation to their goals, values, expectations and concerns incorporating in a complex way the persons physical health, psychological states ,level of independence, social relationships, personal beliefs and their relationship to salient features of environment quality of life refers to an subjective evaluation which is embedded in cultural, social and environmental context .Quality of life cannot be simply equated with terms health status, life satisfaction, mental states or well being rather it is a multidimensional concept.

The degree to which the person enjoys important possibilities of his or her life. This definition can be simplified as –how good is your life for you? (Wood ill et al)
Quality of life is defined as overall general well being which comprise objective descriptors ,and subjective evaluations of physical, social, material, and emotional well being...

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