Generativity in midlife.


Synthesizes theoretical and empirical work on generativity within a life-course perspective, with special emphasis on how this work informs the study of midlife. This chapter begins with a history of the concept of generativity. Next, it considers the ways in which generativity is a developmental construct, contrasting life-cycle and life-course perspectives on the relation between generativity and midlife. Finally, the chapter considers empirical research on the generative lives in the middle adult in the middle-adult years, examining relations between generativity on the one hand and psychological, social, and cultural phenomena on the other. This chapter ends with proposals for new directions in future research and theorizing. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)

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    • "Cultural demands are considered to be age-graded standards and expectations concerning how people may and should start to take responsibility for the next generation (McAdams, 2001). In general, members of a given culture share a view of when certain events should take place in a person's life (e.g., Neugarten, Moore, & Lowe, 1965). "
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    ABSTRACT: The present study examines the association between various facets of generativity, that is, cultural demand for generativity, generative concern, and generative action, with the satisfaction of the needs for relatedness, competence, and autonomy in samples of elderly from Cameroon, China (Hong Kong), the Czech Republic, and Germany. Participants provided information on self-transcendence values (internalized cultural demand), generative concern and action, and need satisfaction. Results suggest, first, that internalized cultural demand affects generative action indirectly through generative concern, second, that generative concern has a positive direct effect on need satisfaction, but that, third, there is also an indirect effect of generative concern on need satisfaction through generative action, which, fourth, is positive for the needs for relatedness and competence but negative for the need for autonomy. These findings were culture-invariant in our study, suggesting generalizability to other cultures. They are discussed with respect to the role of values in generativity and a possible trade-off of generative action for the satisfaction of needs at least in the elderly. (PsycINFO Database Record
    No preview · Article · Dec 2015 · Developmental Psychology
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    • "It contrasts with stagnation, or disengagement from others. One theme common to theories of generativity, as well as to narratives of generative individuals, is the importance of taking an interest in future generations, both to expand the self (an egoistic motive) and also to benefit others (a benevolent motive; see Kotre, 1984; McAdams, 2001). The processes that lead to this convergence of self-and othermotives for some individuals, but not for others, are poorly understood. "
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    ABSTRACT: Five studies develop and validate the Self- and Other-Interest Inventory, an individual-difference measure of the motivation to act in one's own interest and the motivation to act in another's interest that measures these motivations at the level of self-beliefs. Study 1 demonstrates that self- and other-interest can be measured reliably and validly, as independent constructs, with a self-report measure. Study 2 develops a version of the Self- and Other-Interest Inventory for use with a general population and demonstrates systematic changes in the relation between self- and other-interest scores with age. Study 3 shows that self- and other-interest scores vary independently, as a function of the accessibility of related values. Study 4 provides evidence that self-interest scores predict behaviors that benefit the self and that other-interest scores predict behaviors that benefit another person. Finally, Study 5 demonstrates that in situations that involve a trade-off between the pursuit of self-interest and the pursuit of other-interest, such as the prisoner's dilemma, self- and other-interest scores contribute independently to behavioral prediction. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2013 APA, all rights reserved).
    Full-text · Article · Jun 2013 · Journal of Personality and Social Psychology
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    • "Another difficulty is the choice of age-cohort grouping, e.g. it could be suggested that chronological age at which adults are considered midlife may have increased in recent years. Additionally, " historical cohorts may also show different understandings of what generativity is and should be " (McAdams, 2001, p. 416). "
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    ABSTRACT: Erikson already emphasized the importance of staying generative in old age. The concept of generativity as an important element in human development, significantly impacting on one's ability to age successfully, was discussed later by other authors as well. However, so far generativity has not received much attention in gerontology. This review summarizes and discusses the most important theoretical approaches, measurement methods, and empirical findings with regard to their relevance for gerontological research. This includes age-specific generative aspects, a critical discussion of current scales measuring generativity in older adults, and exploring empirical findings with regard to the association between generativity and successful aging. Finally, open questions concerning generativity and aging will be addressed.
    Full-text · Article · Aug 2012 · Journal of Aging Studies
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