Critical gerontology: reflections for the 21st century

Martha B. Holstein and Meredith Minkler

in Critical perspectives on ageing societies

Published by Policy Press

Published in print May 2007 | ISBN: 9781861348906
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9781447302001 | DOI:
Critical gerontology: reflections for the 21st century

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This chapter examines the origins of critical gerontology and mounts a challenge to the decontextualised and tacitly normative ideal of ‘successful ageing’, the presumed neutral concepts of post-modern/post-traditional ageing, and conventional notions of autonomy and empowerment. Throughout, it stresses the necessity of the particularistic lens that feminism and the humanities more broadly rely on, to reveal the hidden sources of values and the effects of these values on different groups. The discussion links this to the political economy framework that informs the understanding about structural sources of difference and highlights the significance of ‘standpoint’ in defining problems and in determining how to approach them.

Keywords: post-traditional ageing; successful ageing; feminism; political economy; humanities

Chapter.  7094 words. 

Subjects: Gerontology and Ageing

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