SOCIAL CONSTRUCTION OF AGE

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  • SOCIAL CONSTRUCTION OF AGE
    • What is the social construction of age?
      • As the population is living longer there is now a construction of elderly
      • active retirement age
      • physical dependency
      • third age
    • The role of grandparents
      • important source of childcare e.g. extended families
      • support for breakdown in families - divorce rates rising
      • Hillman (2007) and Hastings (2007)
        • disadvantaged families rely on grandparents
        • New Right would argue couples should stay together & functionalism support nuclear families
      • created the 'Sandwich Generation' - women later still having dependant children, as well as looking after their parents
    • Evaluation
      • Weaknesses
        • less mobile/failing health
        • could be seen as a burden
        • grandparents may not want to look after grandchildren but feel obliged to do so
      • Strengths
        • more childcare for grandchildren
        • pass on life experience
        • can be there emotionally
        • pass on skills

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