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Ageing populations represent a key global challenge for the twenty-first century. Few areas of life will remain untouched by the accompanying changes to cultural, economic and social life. This book interrogates various understandings of ageing, and provides a critical assessment of attitudes and responses to the development of ageing societies, placing these in the context of a variety of historical and sociological debates. Written in a highly accessible style, the book examines a range of topics including: demographic change across high- and low-income countries; theories of social ageing; changing definitions of 'age'; retirement trends; family and inter-generational relations; poverty and inequality; and heath and social care in later life. The book also considers the key steps necessary in preparing for the social transformation which population ageing will bring. The book provides a fresh and original approach to a topic of central concern to students and scholars working in sociology, social policy and wider social science disciplines and the humanities.
CHRIS PHILLIPSON is Professor of Applied Social Studies, and Founder of the Centre for Social Gerontology, at the University of Keele
Table of Contents
Acknowledgements 1 Introduction: Understanding Ageing PART 1 Demographic and Social Dimensions of Ageing 2 Ageing Societies in a Global Perspective 3 Social Theories of Ageing 4 The Development of Ideas about Age and Ageing 5 The Social Construction of Ageing PART 2 Inequalities and Divisions in Later Life 6 Ageing and Pensions: The Social Construction of Inequality 7 Families and Generational Change in Ageing Societies 8 ‘Late’ Old Age PART 3 New Pathways for Later Life 9 Preparing for Ageing Populations: Rebuilding Institutions 10 Conclusion: New Pathways for Later Life Bibliography Index