Towards a new sociology of ageing: from structured dependency to critical gerontology

Chris Phillipson

in Fighting poverty, inequality and injustice

Published by Policy Press

Published in print June 2011 | ISBN: 9781847427151
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9781447302353 | DOI:
Towards a new sociology of ageing: from structured dependency to critical gerontology

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This chapter assesses Peter's role as the founder in the UK of the sociology of ageing and his influence on the development of critical gerontology. It notes that the article published in the first issue of Ageing and Society in 1981 represented a systematic attempt to provide a new theoretical framework for the study of ageing. It notes that Peter sought to shift the debate from individual approaches to the social processes that led to the structured dependency of people in later life. It then goes on to consider three major issues for structured dependency theory and critical gerontology more generally: the transformation of retirement; the impact of privatisation and deregulation; and finally, the influence of globalisation. It makes a powerful case for a break with the past and for research and policy on older people to be central to wider debates within social policy, sociology and political science, in the overall.

Keywords: sociology of ageing; critical gerontology; Ageing and Society; social processes; structured dependency theory; retirement; privatisation and deregulation; globalization; older people

Chapter.  9967 words. 

Subjects: Social Stratification, Inequality, and Mobility

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