Self and Meaning in the Lives of Older People
Case Studies over Twenty Years


Language: Anglais
Cover of the book Self and Meaning in the Lives of Older People

Subject for Self and Meaning in the Lives of Older People

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259 p. · 15.6x23.5 cm · Hardback
More than thirty-five years ago, a longitudinal study was established to research the health and well-being of older people living in an English city. Self and Meaning in the Lives of Older People provides a unique set of portraits of forty members of this group who were interviewed in depth from their later seventies onwards. Focusing on sense of self-esteem and, especially, of continued meaning in life following the loss of a spouse and onset of frailty, this book sensitively illustrates these persons' efforts to maintain independence, to continue to have a sense of belonging and to contribute to the lives of others. It examines both the psychological and the social resources needed to flourish in later life and draws attention to this generation's ability to benefit from strong family support and from belonging to a faith community. In conclusion, it questions whether future generations will be as resilient.
1. Living a long life: why survive?; 2. From self-esteem to meaning: studying psychological well-being in later life; 3. Investigating older people's lives at the end of the twentieth century; 4. Ageing together; 5. Adaptation to loss of spouse; 6. Ageing alone; 7. Women becoming frailer; 8. Men becoming frailer; 9. Towards one hundred years; 10. The future of later life: personal and policy perspectives on ageing and meaning.
Peter G. Coleman is Emeritus Professor of Psychogerontology and an associate member of the Centre for Research on Ageing at the University of Southampton. His research relates to the mental health of older people, especially the functions of reminiscence and life review and sources of self-esteem and meaning in later life.
Christine Ivani-Chalian has specialised in the study of adult development and learning, with a Master's thesis on the University of the Third Age and a PhD on disability and open learning. She has also worked for the Open University teaching on social care and social work courses.
Maureen Robinson obtained an MPhil in Psychology while working on the initial stages of this project. She works as an independent advocate for older people and persons experiencing dementia, is a long standing community activist, serving over twenty years as a local councillor as well as holding non-executive posts within the NHS and housing organisations.