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Ageing and Popular Culture

Ageing and Popular Culture


  • Date Published: March 1999
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521645478

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About the Authors
  • As the 'grey market' perpetuates the quest for eternal youth, the biological realities of deep old age are increasingly denied. Ageing and Popular Culture traces the historical emergence of stereotypes of retirement and documents their recent demise, arguing that although modernisation, marginalisation, and medicalisation created rigid age classifications, the rise of consumer culture has coincided with a postmodern broadening of options for those in the Third Age. With an adroit use of photographs and other visual sources, Andrew Blaikie demonstrates that an expanded leisure phase is breaking down barriers between mid and later life. At the same time, 'positive ageing' also creates new imperatives and new norms with attendant forms of deviance. While babyboomers may anticipate a fulfilling retirement, none relish decline. Has deep old age replaced death as the taboo subject of the late twentieth century? If so, what might be the consequences?

    • Unique synthesis of history, sociology, policy and cultural studies
    • Emphasis on representations of ageing, with inclusion of striking images from popular culture
    • Forward-looking theory which draws on sociology and social developments, such as the rise of the Third Age and ideas of lifelong learning, etc.
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    Reviews & endorsements

    'Highly stimulating and informative.' Canadian Journal of Sociology

    'A superbly written book. I read it from cover to cover with a sustained interest.' Ageing and Society

    'A major contribution to the literature of gerontology.' Education and Ageing

    'Will mark the beginning of a sociology of 'grey' culture to equal the significance and influence once held by the sociology of youth culture.' Sociology

    'Andrew Blaikie's study is a superb map of this fascinating landscape, one which is sure to have a major influence on the social science community.' The Sociological Review

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    Product details

    • Date Published: March 1999
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521645478
    • length: 260 pages
    • dimensions: 228 x 154 x 17 mm
    • weight: 0.43kg
    • contains: 8 b/w illus.
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    1. Introduction: foreign land
    2. The history of old age: popular attitudes and policy perceptions
    3. The transformation of retirement
    4. Altered images
    5. Exploring visual memory
    6. Pictures at an exhibition: representations of age and generation
    7. Beside the sea: collective visions, ageing and heritage
    8. Landscapes of later life
    9. Conclusion: the struggle of memory against forgetting
    Postscript - 2158.

  • Author

    Andrew Blaikie, University of Aberdeen

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