1. Describe the characteristics that comprise the area of critical gerontology and how it differs from mainstream gerontology in relation to the formation of government policies. With reference to four of the readings from the course, the guest lecture by Lucy Marco, and the film For the Next 7 Generations, discuss how they highlight and inform critical gerontology, and what they provide for policy and an aging population.
While mainstream gerontology is simply the study of the aging processes and individuals as they grow from middle age through later life (Association for Gerontology in Higher Education, 2017), critical gerontology aims to address the limitations of mainstream gerontology, according to material covered in class. It takes into account that society is structured so that certain ideas and groups of people dominate over others, and is critical of both society and gerontology itself. Its main characteristics, according class material, are:
a) Aging and the politics of redistribution this suggests that the issues that older people experience are not the result of individual flaw, but instead are constructed through the operation of economic and political forces. In the first chapter of Transitions and the Lifecourse, Grenier (2012) talks about this as it specifically applies to the aging population. As global demographic trends shift, policies need to be adjusted accordingly, in order to keep up with the changing social meaning of growing old, and the
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