Old Age

Old Age

Old Age

Old Age

Synopsis

Recent decades have seen a fundamental change in the age structure of many western societies. In these societies it is now common for a fifth to a quarter of the population to be retired, for fewer babies to be born than is required to sustain the size of the population and for life expectancy to exceed eighty years old. This book provides an overview of the key issues arising from this demographic change.

Excerpt

KEY QUESTIONS

This book is about the contribution of the social sciences, particularly anthropology and sociology, to an understanding of old age. It seeks to advance our understanding of the world we live in by studying the position of old age within it. The key questions this book poses are: What are the universal characteristics, if any, of the ageing experience? In what different ways is it possible to grow old? What is unique and special about old age in the contemporary world? Answering these questions will illuminate the way we understand society as a whole. It could be argued that the most significant change in modern society lies in its age structure. The period starting from about the last third of the twentieth century has seen the development of new kinds of societies in which one-fifth to a quarter of the population are retired, where fewer babies are born than are required to sustain the size of the population and which see most people living until they are over 80 years of age. There is a strong case that the essential, archetypical characteristic of the modern condition is that of old age.

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.