Article

Understanding the experiences of racialized older people through an intersectional life course perspective

Article

Understanding the experiences of racialized older people through an intersectional life course perspective

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Abstract

This article proposes the development of an intersectional life course perspective that is capable of exploring the links between structural inequalities and the lived experience of aging among racialized older people. Merging key concepts from intersectionality and life course perspectives, the authors suggest an analytic approach to better account for the connections between individual narratives and systems of domination that impinge upon the everyday lives of racialized older people. Our proposed intersectional life course perspective includes four dimensions: 1) identifying key events and their timing, 2) examining locally and globally linked lives, 3) exploring categories of difference and how they shape identities, 4) and assessing how processes of differentiation, and systems of domination shape the lives, agency and resistance among older people. Although applicable to various forms of marginalization, we examine the interplay of racialization, immigration, labour and care in later life to highlight relationships between systems, events, trajectories, and linked lives. The illustrative case example used in this paper emerged from a larger critical ethnographic study of aging in the Filipino community in Montreal, Canada. We suggest that an intersectional life course perspective has the potential to facilitate a deeper understanding of the nexus of structural, personal and relational processes that are experienced by diverse groups of older people across the life course and into late life.

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... Bringing together intersectionality with ageing research was proposed in an earlier paper by Dressel et al. (1997), which from a gerontological perspective argued that ideas around intersectionality and interlocking oppressions can be used to better understand how structural factors shape ageing. Ferrer et al. (2017) argued for combining concepts from intersectionality and life course from an ethnographic perspective. We discuss this existing work and provide empirical examples in more detail below. ...
... Finally, Dressel et al. (1997) also discussed intersectional effects in patterns of inequality over the life course, now well-known in gerontology: age as leveller, persistent inequality, and finally cumulative disadvantage/advantage. More recently, from an ethnographic perspective, Ferrer et al. (2017) outline four elements of an 'intersectional life course perspective': life events, timing and structural forces, local and globally linked lives, identities and categories of difference, These existing attempts at combining intersectionality and life course perspectives provide the point of departure for the present analysis, incorporating recent methodological developments, and focussing on unequal ageing with a particular emphasis on health. ...
... As Black women (or any other gender/ethnic group) age, they transition through different social and re/productive roles and occupy different structural positions. Social identity and lived experience therefore constantly evolve over the lifespan (Ferrer et al. 2017). Intersectional patterning in how people move through life transitions can help to explain intersectional outcomes. ...
Article
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Intersectionality has received an increasing amount of attention in health inequalities research in recent years. It suggests that treating social characteristics separately—mainly age, gender, ethnicity, and socio-economic position—does not match the reality that people simultaneously embody multiple characteristics and are therefore potentially subject to multiple forms of discrimination. Yet the intersectionality literature has paid very little attention to the nature of ageing or the life course, and gerontology has rarely incorporated insights from intersectionality. In this paper, we aim to illustrate how intersectionality might be synthesised with a life course perspective to deliver novel insights into unequal ageing, especially with respect to health. First we provide an overview of how intersectionality can be used in research on inequality, focusing on intersectional subgroups, discrimination, categorisation, and individual heterogeneity. We cover two key approaches—the use of interaction terms in conventional models and multilevel models which are particularly focussed on granular subgroup differences. In advancing a conceptual dialogue with the life course perspective, we discuss the concepts of roles, life stages, transitions, age/cohort, cumulative disadvantage/advantage, and trajectories. We conclude that the synergies between intersectionality and the life course hold exciting opportunities to bring new insights to unequal ageing and its attendant health inequalities.
... 47(p10) The experiences of people in later life must be understood in relation to the cumulative effects of intersections of identity and interlocking oppressions in relation to diverse contextual influences over time. 47,48 Intersectionality is valuable in the design of interventions, e.g., 49-51 social service training tools, 52 policy analysis, 53 and as "a practical tool for the implementation of human rights." 8,54(p131), 55 These applications nonetheless require a fulsome understanding of intersectionality, which is often reduced to a shopping list of identities that serve merely to individuate experience. ...
... 90(p14) The notion that the lives of older immigrants may be simultaneously shaped and often dominated by systems of oppression, and yet demonstrate agency and resistance is one of the tenets of the intersectional life course approach. 47 This tension was clearly demonstrated in a study of older immigrant ageing experiences wherein researchers sought to understand macro-level structural barriers to ageing well in Canada, whereas their older immigrant participants spoke "intentionally about their microlevel experiences …[and] chose to move beyond issues of social exclusion, placing emphasis instead on their triumphs over adversity." 93(p16) This resistance to categories of subordination (e.g., old immigrant racialized woman) speaks to dimensions of those identities that can be employed as resources for coping. ...
... This process of globalization has had a profound effect on culture and national identity as increasingly people and the paid and unpaid work in which they engage has become feminized and 'transnational' in nature. 20,47,127 For example, male workers previously engaged in defunct manufacturing positions in the UK have been replaced by a growing female workforce in an expanded service sector. Increasingly these are racialized and migrant workers needed to meet labour demands created by privatization. ...
Technical Report
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The goal of this literature review is to understand intersectional discrimination and its effects on older Canadians, with a specific focus on the diverse experiences of ageism across multiple intersections of marginality. The Government of Canada is especially interested in identifying interventions that can address the effects of such discrimination on older adults’ ability to access and maintain employment and income security, secure housing and age in place, and access health care and other social services. Commissioned by Employment and Social Development Canada's (ESDC) Seniors and Pensions Policy Secretariat's (SPPS)
... Older adults who belong to ethnocultural groups can be viewed as being exposed to double jeopardy due to age and ethnic stratification. They are differentially affected due to prejudice and discrimination that hinder their privilege, power and access to resources (Ferrer et al. 2017;McDonald 2011). ...
... Critical gerontology highlights that ageing is not merely a "national" problem; rather movement between countries and globalisation play a role in contemporary ageing (Ferrer et al. 2017;Phillipson 2003;Wellin 2018). Global interconnections exist in virtually all areas of human activity, with globalisation exerting unequal and stratified effects on older people (Phillipson 2003). ...
... Global interconnections exist in virtually all areas of human activity, with globalisation exerting unequal and stratified effects on older people (Phillipson 2003). With an analysis of globalisation and ageing, critical gerontology emphasises how gender, class and ethnicity shape older adults' experiences of the nation-state, migration, and the rise of trans-national organisations (Arber 2007;Baars et al. 2016;Ferrer et al. 2017;Phillipson 2003). ...
Article
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The COVID-19 pandemic has profoundly impacted people’s lives globally; this is especially true for the older population. In this exploratory qualitative study 15 in-depth interviews were held to understand the unique experiences of older Chinese adults in Canada in the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic. Participants’ narratives were shaped by their multiple and intersecting identities as immigrants, older adults, people of Chinese descent and as family members. In the face of challenges related to grief, loneliness, social isolation, ageism and racism, study participants demonstrated considerable resilience and strength, particularly with the adoption of technology in their daily lives. As the pandemic enters the second wave in Canada, study findings reinforce the need for anti-ageism, anti-racism and strength-based social work practice, research, and policies aimed at improving older immigrants’ lives during pandemics.
... Reasons include emerging concerns regarding the aging of the general population and the increasing proportion of older adult immigrants among them. The latter trend is the consequence of both the aging of immigrants who entered these societies earlier in their life course and the increase in the number of older adults immigrating in recent years under various family reunification programs (Ferrer et al., 2017b). To date, health and social care practitioners and policymakers within Global North societies have been slow to recognize the issues facing aging immigrants and have paid scant attention to adapting programs and policies to better meet their needs. ...
... Durst and MacLean, 2010;Whitfield and Baker, 2014). For example, recent immigrant older adults and some immigrants who have aged in Canada are more likely to be disadvantaged by the effects of lifelong intersections of economic and social discrimination rooted in racialization (Brotman, 2003;Ferrer et al., 2017b;Koehn et al., 2013;Coloma and Pino, 2016;Guruge et al., 2010;Hulko, 2016). Many immigrant older adults living in Global North societies experience significant health problems exacerbated by the inaccessibility of health and social care services (Brotman, 2003;Koehn, 2009;Koehn et al., 2013;Guruge et al., 2010). ...
... The intersectional life course approach, presented in Ferrer et al. (2017b), is a rich theoretical model that offers the possibility of accounting for specificity and connection between the lived experience and structural discrimination that influences the experiences of aging in Canada for immigrant older adults. The purpose of this paper is to illustrate its application as a methodology through the integration of life story narrative and photovoice data collection methods. ...
Article
Research on racialized older immigrants does not fully acknowledge the interplay between the life course experiences of diverse populations and the structural conditions that shape these experiences. Our research team has developed the intersectional life course perspective to enhance researchers’ capacity to take account of the cumulative effects of structural discrimination as people experience it throughout the life course, the meanings that people attribute to those experiences, and the implications these have on later life. Here we propose an innovative methodological approach that combines life story narrative and photovoice methods in order to operationalize the intersectional life course. We piloted this approach in a study of the everyday stories of aging among diverse immigrant older adults in two distinct Canadian provinces with the goals of enhancing capacity to account for both context and story and engaging with participants and stakeholders from multiple sectors in order to influence change.
... To understand better the multiplicity of ways in which diverse older immigrants experience both loneliness and belonging, social isolation and participation, we theorise their experiences through the lens of an intersectional lifecourse approach (Ferrer et al., 2017b). Our qualitative study in Canadawhere it is estimated that almost half (47%) of people turning 60 will be foreign born by 2062-2066 (Carrière et al., 2016) sought to capture the diversity of older immigrants in relation to multiple sources of identity, such as age, gender, socio-economic status, country of origin, the mode and timing of their entry to Canada (immigration programme, age at migration), and health and mobility status, among others. ...
... Our use of structural approaches to life-story narrative focused on uncovering how personal narrative and history were influenced by cultural themes within the broader society, institutions and social history . Ferrer et al. (2017b) identified four dimensions of the intersectional lifecourse perspective: (a) identifying key events and their timing; (b) examining locally and globally linked lives; (c) exploring categories of difference and how they shape identities; and (d) and assessing how processes of differentiation, and systems of domination, shape the lives and forms of agency and resistance among older people. ...
... Discussion: unpacking storiesapplication of an intersectional lifecourse lens To unpack and theorise the complex stories identified by our participants, and connect them to the wider literature on social isolation and loneliness among immigrant older adults, we apply the intersectional lifecourse lens (Ferrer et al., 2017b) to examine how life events, timing and structural forces shape our participants' experiences of social isolation and loneliness. We then explore the global and linked lives of our participants as well as the categories of difference that influence their experiences along the continua of loneliness to belonging, and isolation to connection. ...
Article
Research points to a higher risk for social isolation and loneliness among new immigrant and refugee older adults. Our article draws from a research project that explored the everyday stories of ageing among 19 diverse immigrant older adults in Canada. To capture their experiences of loneliness and social isolation, we use four illustrative cases derived from a structural approach to life-story narrative. To these we apply the intersectional lifecourse analytical lens to examine how life events, timing and structural forces shape our partici-pants' experiences of social isolation and loneliness. We further explore the global and linked lives of our participants as well as the categories of difference that influence their experiences along the continua of loneliness to belonging, isolation to connection. Finally, we discuss how an understanding of sources of domination and expressions of agency and resistance to these forces might lead us to solutions.
... Originally inspired by the influences of critical race and feminist theories, intersectionality offers an analytical lens looking at the convergence of key social statuses such as age, class, gender, sexuality, and ethnicity (Crenshaw, 1991). It also focuses on how intersection of structural lines of oppressions/subordination such as sexism, racism, and ageism affects the individual position and experience (Ferrer, Grenier, Brotman, & Koehn, 2017). It reveals that this impact may vary depending on its combination with other sources of subordination or privilege (Denis, 2008;Torres, 2019). ...
... Besides intersectionality, some scholars argue that gerontological research addressing ethnicity can benefit from a life course perspective that examines different structural sources of inequalities and (dis)advantages across a lifetime, such as the cumulative advantage and disadvantage model (Dannefer, 2003;Ferraro & Pylypiv Shippee, 2009), and how such sources affect an individual's aging experience (McDonald, 2011;Phillipson, 2015). Ferrer et al. (2017) integrated both these perspectives into their theoretical analysis model of "intersectional life course perspectives." This model tries to grasp the interplay of structural, personal, and relational processes experienced by racialized older persons across a life course. ...
Chapter
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Der Sammelband bringt interdisziplinär theoretische und empirische Erkenntnisse zu DisAbility und Migration in Bildungskontexten sowie Analysen der Intersektionalität von Behinderung, Migration und Religion in Bildung und Gesellschaft zusammen. Er sucht nach Vernetzungen der Anliegen der Migrationspädagogik, Disability-Studies und Religionspädagogik. Dabei werden Theoretisierungen über Zugehörigkeitsnarrative der Migrationsgesellschaft sowie Partizipationsmöglichkeiten in medizinisch-therapeutischen und pädagogischen Handlungsfeldern vollzogen. Zudem wird nach notwendigen Kompetenzen pädagogisch Handelnder gefragt. Ein besonderes Augenmerk richtet sich auf Forschungskontexte, die Subjektperspektiven von Kindern und Jugendlichen mit Behinderung sowie ihrer Eltern in den Blick nehmen.
... Originally inspired by the influences of critical race and feminist theories, intersectionality offers an analytical lens looking at the convergence of key social statuses such as age, class, gender, sexuality, and ethnicity (Crenshaw, 1991). It also focuses on how intersection of structural lines of oppressions/subordination such as sexism, racism, and ageism affects the individual position and experience (Ferrer, Grenier, Brotman, & Koehn, 2017). It reveals that this impact may vary depending on its combination with other sources of subordination or privilege (Denis, 2008;Torres, 2019). ...
... Besides intersectionality, some scholars argue that gerontological research addressing ethnicity can benefit from a life course perspective that examines different structural sources of inequalities and (dis)advantages across a lifetime, such as the cumulative advantage and disadvantage model (Dannefer, 2003;Ferraro & Pylypiv Shippee, 2009), and how such sources affect an individual's aging experience (McDonald, 2011;Phillipson, 2015). Ferrer et al. (2017) integrated both these perspectives into their theoretical analysis model of "intersectional life course perspectives." This model tries to grasp the interplay of structural, personal, and relational processes experienced by racialized older persons across a life course. ...
Article
Population aging and international migration are two of the most critical social trends shaping the world today. As a result, scholars across the globe have begun to investigate how to better incorporate ethnicity into gerontological research. The integration of insights from life-course theory, post-colonial, and feminist theories have resulted in valuable attempts to tackle issues related to ethnicity and old age. Inspired by these bodies of research, this paper explores how decolonial perspectives can strengthen social gerontological research at the intersection of ethnicity and old age. This theoretical paper advances four key insights drawn from decolonial perspectives that expose some current blind spots in gerontological research at the intersection of aging and ethnicity. Through a process of awareness and resistance decolonial perspectives reveal that: 1) colonial thinking is deeply embedded in research; 2) critical reflection about who is considered the “knower” in research is warranted; 3) alternative ways to generate, analyze, and publish knowledge exist; and 4) the places and systems of knowledge production are not neutral. To address these issues empirically, decolonial frameworks call us to actions that include decolonizing the conceptual underpinnings of the research enterprise, scholars themselves, research-in-action (through “epistemic disobedience”), and current knowledge systems and structures that reflect and reinforce colonialism. Potential applications of these insights are explored, but acknowledged as an essential first step on a nascent path. This paper concludes by arguing that decolonial perspectives offer a more genuine gaze by demanding nuanced reflections of contemporary realities aging persons embodying the intersection of aging and ethnicity, like racialized older migrants and ethnic minorities, while simultaneously revealing how historically-rooted power hierarchies that are often invisible constrain their aging experiences.
... Originally inspired by the influences of critical race and feminist theories, intersectionality offers an analytical lens looking at the convergence of key social statuses such as age, class, gender, sexuality, and ethnicity (Crenshaw, 1991). It also focuses on how intersection of structural lines of oppressions/subordination such as sexism, racism, and ageism affects the individual position and experience (Ferrer, Grenier, Brotman, & Koehn, 2017). It reveals that this impact may vary depending on its combination with other sources of subordination or privilege (Denis, 2008;Torres, 2019). ...
... Besides intersectionality, some scholars argue that gerontological research addressing ethnicity can benefit from a life course perspective that examines different structural sources of inequalities and (dis)advantages across a lifetime, such as the cumulative advantage and disadvantage model (Dannefer, 2003;Ferraro & Pylypiv Shippee, 2009), and how such sources affect an individual's aging experience (McDonald, 2011;Phillipson, 2015). Ferrer et al. (2017) integrated both these perspectives into their theoretical analysis model of "intersectional life course perspectives." This model tries to grasp the interplay of structural, personal, and relational processes experienced by racialized older persons across a life course. ...
Chapter
The coronavirus pandemic is the most challenging health emergency in generations, as it has already impacted on the capacities of health infrastructures and is dramatically affecting the local and global economy. Since the global spread of the pandemic, the importance of social distancing as well as the hygiene measures for self-protection and protection of other persons has been enforced, to reduce the rapid spread of the coronavirus. However, these ever-more restrictive protection measures are often not feasible for many, especially marginalized and subaltern groups in the Global South, as state-funded social security systems are very limited there. Therefore, it is not surprising that these developments pose a huge socioeconomic threat as well as potential for social and political unrest, especially to those communities living in already politically fragile and precarious situations in countries such as Ethiopia. Developing Santos’s understanding of social work epistemologies of the South’ and based on a small-scale explorative qualitative study in cooperation with Addis Ababa University, this chapter highlights the impact of historical postcolonial inequalities as well as contemporary political conflicts on the agency of Ethiopian Social and Community Workers as well as their perspectives regarding the multiple crises they confront.
... The principle of 'linked lives' refers to the interdependence of human lives over the life course (Hutchison 2019). An appreciation of both the interconnectedness of human lives and the ways in which our interactions and relationships with others can have a positive and negative influence on our development lies at heart of the principle of 'linked lives' (Ferrer et al. 2017;Hutchison 2005). We know that key actors play a role in the educational experiences of care leavers for example, carers, teachers, and key workers (Driscoll 2013; Rios and Rocco 2014) and both the type of actors providing support and the nature of that support has been examined (Darmody et al. 2013;Martin and Jackson 2002;Skilbred, Iversen, and Moldestad 2017). ...
... For both Linda and Murray, the experience of parenthood was key to their later reengagement with education. In each case, this intergenerational experience in relation to parenting and being parents speaks to the heart of the principle of 'linked lives' (Ferrer et al. 2017;Hutchison 2005). For Linda, the arrival of her baby prompted a more planful and strategic approach to enhancing her future income prospects and her conditions of work guided by the broader ambition of securing a better future for her child and herself. ...
Article
Adult care leavers who have spent time in ‘out-of-home care’ during childhood face many educational challenges. While some care leavers may manage to adhere to ‘normal’ timelines within their educational progression, others may experience delays in their educational journey or a longer-term ‘resignation’ from education during their care/post-care journey. In this paper, we offer a fuller understanding of what drives underachievement in this population, as well as what helps care leavers to re-engage with education. Using a case study approach, we explore the potential of the life course principle ‘linked lives’ for better understanding barriers to re-engagement and the processes through which key actors may promote the (re)development of learner identity, and educational re-engagement among adult care leavers, over time. We draw on analysis of data from two studies of positive educational outcomes for adult care leavers - one in education, one in the workplace. Using a linked lives lens, this theoretically-informed paper presents the concepts of support, learner identity, and educational memories as candidates for deepening our understanding of educational re-engagement of care leavers – and comparable populations facing educational challenges.
... The principle of linked lives is central to the life course perspective (Elder, 1994). This principle emphasises the interdependence and interconnectedness of human lives across the life course and the ways our relationships and interactions with others can both support and constrain our behaviours (Ferrer, Grenier, Brotman, & Koehn, 2017;Hutchison, 2005). The role of carers and other professionals in influencing the educational outcomes and pathways of people with care-experience has been outlined above (Jackson & Martin, 1998;Cameron & Jackson, 2002;Skilbred et al., 2017). ...
... 'Linked lives' has been heralded as the most central principle of the life course perspective (Elder, 1994). The principle of linked lives emphasises the interdependence of human lives across the life course and the ways our relationships and interactions with others can both support and constrain our behaviours (Ferrer et al., 2017;Hutchison, 2005). We move through life as members of groups, communities, and networks and as such our lives are shaped by those around us including our parents, children, partners, and peers (White & Wu, 2014). ...
Thesis
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The central role of education in relation to promoting positive outcomes in adulthood is well-established in existing literature (Hammond & Feinstein, 2006; Nicaise, 2012). However, a growing body of evidence points to poor educational outcomes among young people leaving out-of-home care in the initial years after leaving care, that is, between ages 18 and 24 (Courtney & Dworsky, 2006; Gypen, Vanderfaeillie, De Maeyer, Belenger, & Van Holen, 2017; Jackson & Cameron, 2012). Less is known however, about the educational outcomes and pathways of ‘older’ care-experienced adults (that is, those over age 24) and the ways in which these pathways have been shaped and influenced over time. Research in this area, and that of young people leaving care in general (Stein, 2006b), has also failed to take account of wider theoretical perspectives when seeking to understand and unravel the complexities at play when it comes to the poor educational outcomes of care leavers (Berridge, 2007). Emerging research (Duncalf, 2010; Harrison, 2017) indicates that if educational attainment and progress are measured later than is typically the case (that is extending beyond age 24) rates of pursuit of further and higher education among care- experienced adults may increase suggesting that the ‘later’ pursuit of education warrants further investigation. Furthermore, O’Higgins, Sebba, and Luke (2015: 13) have noted that the poor educational outcomes of individuals with care experience may result from “a complex combination of individual characteristics and pre-care and potentially in-care experiences, such as placement instability”. Together with the possible impact of events and experiences in the years after leaving care and beyond, these observations point to a need for further, in-depth exploration of the nuances of the educational pathways of ‘older’ care-experienced adults and those factors that have shaped and influenced them over time. This study sought to pioneer a new line of inquiry in this area exploring the educational pathways that ‘older’ care-experienced adults have taken over the course of their lives. In addition, this study drew on the life course perspective (Elder, 1994; 1998) as both guiding research paradigm and theoretical framework to explore if, and how, this perspective could provide new insights into how the educational pathways of care- experienced adults have been shaped and influenced over time. To that end, the central research questions guiding this study were: 1) What are the educational pathways that care-experienced adults have taken over the course of their lives, and expect to take in future? 2) How can the life course perspective enhance understanding of the ways that educational pathways are shaped and influenced over time? Data were collected via 18 educational life history interviews (Moore, 2006) with care- experienced adults (aged 24-36) in Ireland. It was hoped that hearing from this ‘older’ sample of care-experienced adults would: 1) Provide an opportunity to gain insight into the educational pathways of this group; and 2) Illuminate our understanding of those factors that shaped and influenced these educational pathways over time by drawing on two key principles of the life course perspective – ‘linked lives’ and ‘human agency’. This PhD study incorporates four separate peer-reviewed journal articles and accompanying introduction, background, methodology, and discussion and conclusion chapters. The first peer-reviewed journal article (Chapter Three) outlines the relevance and value of the life course perspective to studying this issue. The second peer-reviewed journal article (Chapter Five) outlines the four educational pathway ‘types’ taken by study participants. The third and fourth peer-reviewed journal articles explore how the life course principles of ‘linked lives’ (Chapter Six) and ‘human agency’ (Chapter Seven) can illuminate our understanding of the ways the educational pathways of adults with care experience are shaped and influenced over time. Findings of this study suggest that: 1) Diversity in the educational pathways of people with care experience should be expected; 2) Connections with key actors play a central role in influencing these educational pathways and are visible across the life course; 3) Human agency, as conceptualised from a life course perspective, is pivotal to shaping these educational pathways; this is done over time and in the context of various external and structural influences which both constrain and support individual agency; 4) The life course perspective provides unique insights on the educational pathways of adults with care experience; and 5) The life course principles of linked lives and agency are valuable conceptual tools for examining issues related to education and care and developing existing knowledge regarding how educational pathways are shaped and influenced over time.
... Thus, chronological age in itself might not be a sufficient indicator to fully understand the intersection of gentrification and aging beyond simplistic dichotomies. The aging population is heterogeneous, and precautions have to be made with universalizing assumptions, at the risk of losing the complexity and particularities of aging groups and individual trajectories (Ferrer et al. 2017). What we do know is that low-income aging renters in gentrifying Montreal neighborhoods are very likely to experience housing insecurity. ...
Book
Bringing together scholarly but readable essays on the process of gentrification, this two-volume collection addresses the broad question: In what ways does gentrification affect cities, neighborhoods, and the everyday experiences of ordinary people? In this first volume of Gentrification around the World, contributors from various academic disciplines provide individual case studies on gentrification and displacement from around the globe: chapters cover the United States of America, Spain, Brazil, Sweden, Japan, Korea, Morocco, Great Britain, Canada, France, Finland, Peru, India, Indonesia, Pakistan, Syria, and Iceland. The qualitative methodologies used in each chapter—which emphasize ethnographic, participatory, and visual approaches that interrogate the representation of gentrification in the arts, film, and other mass media—are themselves a unique and pioneering way of studying gentrification and its consequences worldwide.
... Just as positive early encounters can facilitate access to aged care later in life, negative experiences of racism and discrimination can hinder it (Ferrer et al., 2017). In the present study, no interviewees mentioned racism when asked about negative experiences with aged-care providers. ...
Article
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The literature on older migrants often focuses on identifying the characteristics of ethnic groups that constitute ‘barriers’ for members of these populations to access care. This paper offers an alternative conceptualisation of access to care, by combining relational approaches to place and the notion of super-diversity. From this perspective, ‘access to care’ is perceived as an outcome of an individual's embeddedness in relationships of care in urban places. The objective of the study is to identify relationships of care that facilitate access to aged care for older first-generation migrants. Thirty-two semi-structured interviews were conducted with older migrants who were residents of Nijmegen or The Hague, The Netherlands. All interviewees had accessed home care, home aid and/or day care. Both relationships with minority-specific services and informal relationships of care, particularly those within local minority communities, were found to facilitate access to aged care. Past experiences with health and social care were also found to influence current relationships with formal care providers. This study, therefore, suggests that policy makers and care organisations should build long-term positive relationships with new and incoming migrant groups. In addition, it argues that policy makers and care providers should identify locally relevant shared migration-related (rather than ethnic) identities around which communities can be mobilised and targeted with appropriate services.
... We used a critical lens reflecting our transformational analysis objective to identify themes emerging from the qualitative data. We incorporated theoretical concepts embedded in the intersectional life course perspective [53] and categories outlined within the GBA+ approach to enhance our analytic capacity to pay attention to how the lived experience of events (particularly those related to access and equity) are structured through institutional policies and practices at the local level. A minimum of two researchers independently coded each transcript line by line (first level codes). ...
Article
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Canadian, US, and UK public health and clinical research has identified barriers to health service access for Two-Spirit, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, non-binary, and intersex (2SLGBTQ+) communities. While offering important insight into the health service experiences of 2SLGBTQ+ communities, this body of research only recently, and still only minimally, reports on home care access experiences. Drawing on key findings from the 2SLGBTQ+ Home Care Access Project, a mixed-methods, Ontario-wide study, this paper animates an Access and Equity Framework, using participant stories and perspectives to underscore the relevance and effectiveness of the Framework as a tool to support systematic organizational assessment, evaluation, and implementation of access and equity strategies. Home care organizations can use this tool to assess their programs and services along a continuum of intentionally inviting, unintentionally inviting, unintentionally disinviting, and intentionally disinviting care for 2SLGBTQ+ people. To support this process, the framework includes six indicators of access to care: community engagement, leadership, environment, policies and processes, education and training, and programs and services.
... For example, gender, im/ migration, disability, housing, health, and care emerged as situations of disadvantage and/or sites of precarity. Here, results suggest the need to explore the potential linkages between precarity and intersectionality, and in particular, how disadvantage may sustain or worsen precarity in late life (see Collins & Bilge, 2016;Crenshaw, 1990;Ferrer et al., 2017;Koehn, Neysmith, Kobayashi, & Khamisa, 2013). What theoretical, conceptual, and methodological possibilities might exist? ...
Article
Background and objective: The concept of precarity holds the potential to understand insecurities and risks experienced by older people in the contemporary social, economic, political and cultural context. This study maps existing conceptualizations of precarity in relation to aging and later life, identifies key themes, and considers the use of precarity in two subfields. Research design and methods: This article presents the findings of a two-phase scoping study of the international literature on precarity in later life. Phase I involved a review of definitions and understandings of precarity and aging. Phase II explored two emerging subthemes of disability and im/migration as related to aging and late life. Results: A total of 121 published studies were reviewed across Phase I and Phase II. Findings reveal that the definition of precarity is connected with insecurity, vulnerability, and labor and that particular social locations, trajectories, or conditions may heighten the risk of precarity in late life. Implications and discussion: The article concludes by outlining the need for conceptual clarity, research on the unique multidimensional features of aging and precarity, the delineation of allied concepts and emerging applications, and the importance of linking research results with processes of theory building and the development of policy directives for change.
... Experiencing racism is a dynamic process that operates across time, domains, and nations (Wallace et al., 2016). Secondly, how people react in response to racism is shaped by historical and social circumstances (Backman & Nilsson, 2011;Ferrer et al., 2017). Manifestations of racism shift over time in response to changes in policy and practice and broader shifts in social behavior. ...
Article
Indigenous, migrant, racial and ethnic minority group members report experiences of racism that are lifelong and damaging. To understand the context that shapes these experiences, we developed a tabular approach to analyzing focus group interviews of life course experiences of racism. The approach was grounded in critical realism and narrative analysis. Using these foundations, stories of personal experiences of racism were understood to provide evidence of enduring social structures that maintain racism. Extracts were organized into tables with rows corresponding with periods of the life-course (such as early childhood, adolescence, young adulthood, mid-life and older age). Rows were labelled with the decade these experiences occurred to highlight sociohistorical influences. Columns in the table were used to represent the familial generation of the protagonists in the stories. Examining these experiences as occurring across different life-course periods (childhood, adolescence, adulthood), from different cohorts and family roles (child, parent, grandparent), and time periods revealed patterns in the persistence of racism. This approach was instrumental in identifying the ways that experiences of racism are dynamic and contested even as they are experienced as persistent across the life-course. Situating this within a critical realist framework built an explanation of the enduring social structures that support racism to persist even while experiences of racism change.
... Such actions have limited results, however, and therefore actions on a 'deep structure' level are needed ( Resnicow et al., 1999 ). This means that care professionals and organizations should be aware of their ethno-centric, essentialist approach and move towards an intersectional approach which can address the complexity and the heterogeneity of ethnic minority care recipients ( )" > Zubair and Norris, 2015;Torres, 2015;Ferrer et al., 2017 ). ...
Article
Background: Due to its labour migration history, Belgium is confronted with an increasingly older population of people of Moroccan background who have been diagnosed with dementia. These migrants came to the country during the labour migration wave of the nineteen-sixties and seventies to work in mines and other industries and they are now ageing. Yet little is known about how dementia care is provided to this older population. Objectives: This study explores how dementia care is provided to these Moroccan older people with dementia, and what challenges do caregivers face in providing care. Methods: A qualitative study including 31 informal caregivers of older Moroccan migrants with dementia and professional caregivers in the field of dementia care in several Belgian cities was conducted. After an initial focus group including 6 informal and professional caregivers, individual in-depth interviews were held with 12 informal caregivers of Moroccan decent and 13 professional caregivers. In order to be included in the study, informal caregivers had to have a recent experience in caring for an older family member with dementia. The professional caregivers had to be active in the field of dementia care (General Practitioners, nurses, psychologists,…) and have experience with older migrants with dementia. Results: Analyses of the collected data reveal that current dementia care is a challenging, complex and dynamic search process. This process is shaped by (1) multiple factors reflecting the changing care needs of the care recipient during the course of the dementia, (2) the individual (transnational) recourses of the informal caregivers and the (3) current (lack of) accessibility of professional dementia care (driven by the absence of an accessible migration-, culture- and religion-sensitive professional care). The limited professional service-use is predominantly compensated through the search for transnational external helpers. The limited migration, cultural and religious sensitivity of current dementia care is often overlooked by professional caregivers. Conclusion: The study provides a better understanding of the complex reality of dementia care for older migrants in which these different aspects intersect. This understanding enable health professionals and policy makers to develop a better suited care for older migrants with dementia.
... While a life course approach offers a situated and storied account of people's lives, it is not well equipped to extract an explicitly structural analysis from those experiences. By jointly applying intersectionality and life course approaches to the analysis of multiply marginalised older adults Ferrer et al. (2017) have sought to bridge this gap. The four dimensions of their resulting intersectional life course approach include '1) identifying key events and their timing, 2) examining locally and globally linked lives, 3) exploring categories of difference and how they shape identities, 4) and assessing how processes of differentiation, and systems of domination shape the lives, agency and resistance among older people ' (2017, 10). ...
Article
Older Punjabi Sikh women are central to their families and communities, but their own needs are often overlooked. Probing the intersections of gender, ethnicity and age and interlocking experiences of sexism, racism and ageism within and beyond their own communities can deepen our understanding of why this happens and what we can do about it. Vertical hierarchies of women that develop in response to male domination, the gendered nature of women’s work and leisure activities, migration patterns that result in generational role reversals, unmet childcare needs, and sponsorship policies that engender dependency and promote isolation of older adults all play a role. These disparate threads are integrated through application of the intersectional life course lens, which recognises the importance of structural influences and oppressions on life course transitions over time and space.
... Marier et al invitent à ne plus penser « les personnes âgées comme un groupe ou une catégorie à part mais [à] considérer le vieillissement et la vieillesse comme s'inscrivant dans la continuité d'un parcours de vie, à une intersection spécifique de positionnements sociaux impliquant un cumul d'avantages et de désavantages, ainsi qu'un entrecroisement spécifique d'oppressions à un âge avancé (Ferrer et al, 2017), nécessitant des politiques, interventions et services adaptés à cette diversité de situations et d'expériences » (2017 :6). Les vie jouent un rôle essentiel dans la manière dont la personne vieillit. ...
Thesis
En posant un regard scientifique sur le vécu quotidien d’une population souvent négligée en sciences sociales et dans le débat public, la thèse vise à nourrir la réflexion sur l’inclusion dans la ville des personnes en fragilité psychique vieillissantes. L’objectif est d’interroger le rapport qu’elles entretiennent avec la ville, à travers l’étude de leurs géographies quotidiennes. Peuvent-elles pratiquer et s’approprier la ville comme elles le voudraient ? Trouvent-elles une place qui leur convient en tant qu’habitantes ? La recherche consiste en une étude qualitative des espaces de vie de 14 personnes en fragilité psychique vieillissantes (+50 ans) vivant dans une petite ville française ou dans les villages alentour. Ces personnes sont aussi adhérentes d’un Groupe d’Entraide Mutuelle (GEM), un dispositif d’entraide entre pairs organisé sous forme associative. La collecte des données s’appuie sur plusieurs mois d’observation participante au sein du GEM et sur deux séries d’entretiens (dont l’une avec réalisation d’une carte mentale) auprès des participants. L’analyse montre la multitude de facteurs contraignant les pratiques des participants, en particulier au regard de leur vie sociale, des loisirs et du logement. Les participants évoquent un sentiment mitigé d’appropriation des espaces, avec des géographies quotidiennes marquées par une alternance constante entre prises et manques de prises. L’analyse met aussi en lumière le statut particulier du GEM au sein de leurs espaces de vie. Celui-ci offre un espace-ressource dans la ville que les participants peuvent s’approprier. Ce dispositif, ouvert sur la ville, leur permet également de profiter de lieux où ils n’iraient pas seuls ou bien d’eux-mêmes, contribuant ainsi à diversifier et à accroître le périmètre des espaces de vie. L’analyse souligne la manière dont les adhérents se sont saisis collectivement de leur GEM pour agir eux-mêmes sur la ville et la rendre davantage inclusive.
... Public datasets allow and invite secondary inquiry to clarify these patterns, but giving them context will require a theoretical foundation that is both sensitive to the variety of care dyads and recognizes their origins in broader hegemony. Fortunately, studies are calling for more intersectional perspectives in health and aging research (Evans 2019;Ferrer et al. 2017;Gkiouleka et al. 2018;Hankivsky 2012;Richardson & Brown 2016). ...
Thesis
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In the coming decades, there may not be enough professional caregivers to meet the needs of elderly and disabled persons; family and friends will take on more informal care roles than ever before, with great social impact, yet the social literature lacks consistency and breadth. This exploratory, quantitative study organizes the disparate social literature on caregiving and dementia care and suggests a critical theoretical framework to interpret social factors more fully. Utilizing the Caregiving in the U.S. dataset from 2015, three hypotheses test this framework for a dementia care population to identify variable combinations that exert outsized influence on care outcomes. Findings confirm two hypotheses: people of color tend to develop dementia far earlier than whites and persons who are marginalized in multiple ways tend to perform more activities of daily living; these findings demonstrate a role for intersectionality and queer subjectivity in dementia care analyses and interpretation.
... Intersectionality theory teaches us that oppressive structures, practices and policies are designed to obfuscate the power relations that shape daily interactions between institutional agents and marginalised communities (Brotman, 2003;Ferrer et al, 2017). As such, people who experience oppression in the everyday may not always be aware of or able to name the specific sources of their oppression, such as those policies and practices that shape everyday forms of oppression and discrimination (Smith, 1995). ...
Article
Community accountability is a model through which to redress anti-Black racism in health care and to create community-based participatory research about the health of Black Canadians. This article provides a case example of a study undertaken by a Black community collective in Quebec made up of researchers, activists, service providers, business leaders and their allies who sought community accountability in making visible the impact of COVID-19 on local Black communities. The principles articulated within the Black emancipatory action research approach (Akom, 2011) are used to ground an analysis of our research-activist process in order to illuminate how knowledge gained through the collection of data can be used to help inform Black communities about the realities, needs and concerns of their members, to advocate for rights and entitlements, and to work towards community accountability in research that empowers Black communities, both in Quebec and elsewhere.
... Por tanto, la lente del curso de la vida nos obliga a adoptar una visión dinámica de las intersecciones en lugar de una visión estática (Arber y Evandrou, 1993). Ilyan Ferrer et al. (2017) argumentan que para realizar un análisis interseccional de las desigualdades de la salud desde una perspectiva del curso de vida, es necesario considerar al menos cuatro elementos: 1) eventos de la vida, tiempo y fuerzas estructurales; 2) vidas locales y globalmente vinculadas; 3) identidades y categorías de diferencia; 4) agencia (dominación y resistencia). Estos autores también se pronuncian a favor de examinar las intersecciones entre los acontecimientos de la vida, las transiciones, las trayectorias y los sistemas de dominación a lo largo del curso de vida. ...
Article
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La discusión sobre los grupos que enfrentan situaciones de vulnerabilidad por las condiciones de desigualdad múltiple y acumulada en la sociedad ha aumentado en los últimos años. En especial, se ha insertado en la discusión el concepto de interseccionalidad y curso de vida (Holman y Walker, 2020; Ferraro y Shippee, 2009; Calasanti y Slevin, 2001). En México, durante las últimas décadas, muchos grupos de la población han experimentado discriminación y desigualdad, formas de violencia que se han normalizado y propiciado condiciones de vida adversas para alcanzar una calidad de vida y esperanzas de vida saludable. Esto se ha observado en las condiciones y el acceso a la salud de las personas por su condición étnica, género, edad, clase social e identidad de género (Montes de Oca y Gutiérrez Cuéllar, 2018).
... And much less if it's been a [female] widow; that's somewhat sexist, but it's kind of the case with us. We serve many more women than men in the program who have not been able to do even what was done previously [in repairs]… Comments like those from Rian and Blair reflect the intersectional intricacies involved in HCBS programming coordination for diverse older adults, dynamics that have received only limited attention in the literature (Ferrer, Grenier, Brotman, & Koehn, 2017;Hooyman & Gupta, 2017). These comments further illustrate downstream challenges following the identification of needs for diverse clients, while highlighting the centrality of providers in bridging these gaps, a dynamic contextualized in the following section. ...
Article
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As the overall U.S. population grows older and increasingly diverse, greater focus is needed on the various Home and Community-Based Services (HCBS), such as home health care, case management, meal delivery and preparation, and personal care, required to address the unique social and medical complexities of diverse older adults. Presently, however, there has been limited research on needs and broader dynamics associated with HCBS facilitation in this population. To address this gap, we sought to contextualize practices and barriers to care coordination for diverse homebound older adults, conducting semi-structured interviews with 41 providers of HCBS, including older adult care coordinators, in-home care workers, and physicians in greater Chicago, Illinois. Common care coordination practices included fluid processes related to engendering racial concordance in care, facilitating linguistic adaptations, and navigating relationships with clients' families. However, in certain circumstances, these practices are hindered. For example, broad client-level challenges included racialized dynamics of distrust and limited health literacy, and organizations cited ongoing obstacles recruiting and retaining diverse staff and finding HCBS providers to service low-income, minority communities often burdened by high crime rates. Continued efforts need to be made to better understand the HCBS needs of diverse homebound older adults and the associated challenges of providing culturally humble programming to this population.
Technical Report
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Participants in the Caregiving, Family, and Homecare forum identified complex and mutually reinforcing barriers to the health and social care needed by immigrant older adults. While it is true that many immigrants feel that care should be provided to older adults within the familial context this tends to place additional pressure on women in these families to deliver that care, since care work is gendered, underpaid and unrecognized. Moreover, health care providers must not assume that older immigrants have family members to provide that care, since many do not. Finally, many older immigrants do not qualify for home care because of immigration regulations, although there is variation across jurisdictions. Inequitable access impedes timely and appropriate care.
Article
Objective: The population of older adults suffering from alcohol use disorder (AUD) is increasing worldwide. Recovery from AUD among older adults is a challenging process which can lead to amelioration in these individuals' physical, mental, familial and social domains. However, little is known about the life experiences of older adults who have recovered from AUD. Method: A qualitative-naturalistic approach was implemented. Semi-structured in-depth interviews were conducted with 20 older adults, age 60 +, who had recovered from AUD for periods ranging from 1 to 9 years. Results: Three main categories emerged from the content analysis: a) Regrets, self-forgiveness and a desire to remedy past wrongs; b) successful aging and eagerness to live; c) enduring challenges. These categories reflect the complex and multidimensional experiences of older adults who have recovered from AUD. Conclusion: Older adults who recover from AUD report experiencing successful aging. They are willing to engage in new ventures in late life, live actively and age healthfully. However, despite their positive outlook, older adults recovering from AUD are a vulnerable population, especially when they experience marginalization as post-AUD older adults. This underscores the need to reach out to this population and the host of challenges they face to provide supportive treatments and interventions from interdisciplinary professionals who can guide their recovery from AUD and help them flourish in late life.
Article
Studies that assess the association between race and health have focused intently on the cumulative impact of continuous exposure to racism over an extended period. While these studies have contributed significantly to the general understanding of the life experiences and health status of racialized people, few studies have explicitly bridged the experiences of aging with gender and the wide structural barriers and social factors that have shaped the lives of racialized older women. This study aimed to investigate the origins of health inequities to highlight factors that intersect to affect the health and wellbeing of older Black women across their life course. Descriptive phenomenology was used to describe older Black women's health and wellbeing, and factors that impact their health across their life course. Criteria-based sampling was used to recruit study participants (n = 27). To be eligible women needed to be 55 years or older, speak English, self-identify as a Black female, and live in the Greater Toronto Area. Data analysis was guided by phenomenology. Themes identified demonstrated that participants' health and wellbeing were influenced by gender bias, racism, abuse, and retirement later in life. Participants reported having poor mental health during childhood and adulthood due to anxiety and depression. Other chronic illnesses reported included hypertension, diabetes, and cancer. Qualitative methods provided details regarding events and exposures that illuminate pathways through which health inequities emerge across the life course.
Article
A growing body of research addresses the long-term implications of early-life circumstances for adult health and aging by drawing on retrospective reports on childhood. There has been little scholarly discourse on considerations for the design of such questions for members of racial/ethnic minority groups specifically. This article aims to encourage greater attention to this area by presenting insights from the process of designing a childhood history questionnaire within an ongoing study of cognition, health, and aging among older African American adults in greater Newark, New Jersey. The article presents on three overarching themes, including the importance of (a) adopting a resilience orientation with attention to protective factors, (b) being sensitive to concerns about questions on adverse childhood experiences, and (c) orienting to ethnoracially embedded cohort influences. The article concludes by describing the particular importance of cultural humility—with attention to intersectional social positions—among researchers who are engaged in studies on childhood with older adults from underrepresented racial/ethnic groups.
Article
Bereits ein kursorischer Blick auf die Debatte um Intersektionalität macht deutlich, dass es sich hier nicht um eine in sich geschlossene Theorie oder einen einheitlichen Ansatz zur Untersuchung multipler Ungleichheitslagen handelt. Vielmehr werden Offenheit und Mehrdeutigkeit als zentrale Merkmale des Konzepts beschrieben, die sich aus der Vielfalt der Bezugstheorien und der Mehrdimensionalität der zu untersuchenden Differenzkategorien und Ungleichheitsverhältnisse ergeben. Im Beitrag soll der Frage nachgegangen werden, welchen Beitrag eine intersektionale Perspektive für die gerontologische Forschung leisten kann. Even a cursory view on the debate about intersectionality reveals that this is not a coherent theory or a uniform approach to the investigation of multiple inequalities. Instead openness and ambiguity are described as central characteristics of the concept, which result from the diversity of the reference theories and the multidimensionality of the categories of difference and relationships of inequality to be examined. In this article the question as to whether an intersectional perspective can provide new insights for gerontological research is explored.
Article
In the past 20 years, older adults’ civic participation has received considerable attention. Current literature shows that rates of voting and volunteering have been consistently lower among African Americans and Latinx older adults compared to White older adults. However, little research has explored civic participation in the context of historical structures of inequality that influence how Black and Latinx populations participate in civic life. I draw from an intersectional life course perspective and phenomenological methods to examine experiences of civic participation through participants’ lens. Findings draw our attention to how race/racism and age/ageism shape how, where, and with whom participants participate. Findings demonstrate how civic participation is embedded within systems of inequality that inform individual behavior as well as available opportunities for engagement. These findings call attention to the need to re-conceptualize and support civic participation that centers the experiences of historically ethnoracially oppressed populations.
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In rapidly aging societies, the housing situation of low-income aging renters deserves more attention from urban anthropology, housing studies and social gerontology alike. The main objective of this chapter is to describe the experiences of a sample of aging individuals in handling situations of housing insecurity and displacement in four gentrifying Montreal neighborhoods. The data presented here was gathered through a fieldwork conducted among housing committees’ in four gentrifying neighborhoods in central Montreal. Ten interviews were conducted with community organizers and 20 interviews with aging tenants. Housing insecurity, displacement and social participation among housing committees can be understood as an interconnected phenomenon: One of the main justifications for participating among housing committees was the possibility of not only broadening but taking control over residential choices.
Article
Based on findings from a Canadian-based study, this article examines the stories of young adult women carers. Young adult women caring for a parent or grandparent were interviewed using social network maps, participant-driven photography and care timelines. The findings reveal numerous impacts on the women’s lives, which we categorise according to three temporal periods: the past (how they came to be carers); the present (their daily realities of care); and the future (how they imagine what is ahead). We conclude with a discussion regarding the tensions between the women’s personal stories and the social forces that shape young women’s caring.
Article
Based on a content analysis of family gerontology empirical studies in 13 journals (2009–2018), this article identifies theories currently being used and provides suggestions for future family gerontology theorizing. Family gerontologists are now using a greater range of theories than they were in the 1990s, including many middle‐range ones, and more scholars are citing multiple theories in their publications. Ways to advance family gerontology theorizing are to integrate more gerontology content into family theory textbooks, link middle‐range theories to broader general theories, and discuss how to use multiple theories effectively in research. Commonly used and emerging theories in family gerontology research can also be closely examined, and findings related to intersectionality and intergenerational ambivalence are briefly examined as examples of emerging theories used to study later‐life families.
Article
Across the world, the experiences of women in later life vary enormously, not only along intersectional lines, but also due to cumulative (dis)advantages over an individual’s life course. The current study explores how early-life structural (dis)advantages experienced by older African women (particularly experiences related to economic adversity and the social disadvantages that often accompany it) shape their later life experiences and agency. The life stories used in this paper emerged from a larger qualitative study of aging and gender identities in Tanzania based on fifteen (15) in-depth interviews and ten (10) focus group discussions with women 60 to 82 years old. Analyzing the data from an intersectional perspective and life course approach demonstrated that older women’s situations area result of the complex interaction of various structural and individual factors, and that timing is crucial for exercising agency. The findings also revealed that as a result of gender norms, the majority of older Tanzanian women were vulnerable to discrimination, poverty, and violence. The norms that promote gender discrimination also limit women’s agency and social functioning subject to the constraints imposed. To help protect older women against discrimination and violence, gender-sensitive policies, social programs and legal reforms are critical for speed up the pace of change and foster permanent shifts in harmful gender norms so that aging experiences are no longer all about being a woman.
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Population aging and international migration have propelled the aging of ethno-cultural minorities to the forefront of social scientific inquiries. Examining how scholarship on old age makes sense of ethnicity and race has become relevant. Based on a scoping review of peer-reviewed articles published between 1998 and 2017 (n = 336), the present article asks whether the notions of racialization and racism inform this scholarship and argues that a racism-sensitive research agenda is needed.
Thesis
The PhD dissertation explored: 1) a multilayered image of the dementia experience and dementia care provision among labor migrant families, and 2) methodological pathways to contribute to more ethical research involving this population. The findings of this dissertation are based on five studies. The findings show that the experience of dementia and the dementia care trajectory is defined by the intersectional social position of older labor migrants and their families, inviting us to move beyond the binary division between migrants and non-migrants with “having a different culture” as the division line. This while recognizing the impact of having a migration background, a non-normative culture and religion on care provision. The current dementia care is provided by a complex and dynamic transnational network of informal and formal caregivers that also includes alternative care forms. This picture of care provision is sought by family caregivers as an answer to their unmet care needs: A “complexity-sensitive person-centered responsive care” considers the multilayered identity of the older migrant with dementia. This reflects individual and structural professional care gaps to provide inclusive dementia care. Understanding this complexity can advance the provision of better dementia care for older migrants with dementia. Therefore, a new conceptual lens to examine dementia care for a diverse population is suggested. This dissertation also contributes to the debate on how to conduct ethical research on dementia among older migrants by moving away from the culturalist frame where it is currently embedded with biased and narrow assumptions about this population as a result. This dissertation suggests therefore a further exploration of decolonial frameworks as compass for an ethical gerontological research praxis: a praxis that engages us into a process of awareness of and resistance to the historically rooted coloniality of mind in our own knowledge production.
Article
This article, reporting on a Canadian-based research project, tells the stories of three first- and second-generation, racialized, young women from immigrant families in order to illuminate their unique realities of intergenerational care and to better understand the role of gender, racialization, and migration in shaping their lived experiences of care. Using a feminist-informed adaption to the intersectional life-course approach, we explore the life-course challenges experienced by these women and their perspectives on agency, resilience, and resistance in light of personal, relational, and structural barriers faced by both themselves and their parents and grandparents for whom they provide care. Findings related to meanings attributed to care and family, developmental and relational disruptions and their impact, hybridized subjectivity, and responses to discrimination and social isolation are explored through the telling of women’s caring stories across time. The article concludes with recommendations for social work intervention and service provision in order to better recognize and support racialized young first- and second-generation adult women carers across sectors.
Article
This paper contributes to the growing body of work on precarious labor, immigration, and social gerontology by examining the racialization of precarious employment across the life course. In particular, the authors examine the impact of precarious employment and discrimination among racialized older immigrants in Canada. Racialized older immigrants are more likely to be disadvantaged by the effects of lifelong intersections of economic and social discrimination rooted in racialization, gender, ageism, and socio-economic status. Drawing from a narrative-photovoice project that focused on the life stories of older immigrants living in Quebec and British Columbia, this paper presents the in-depth stories and photographs of four participants to highlight how intersections of race, gender, age, immigration status, and ability shape and structure experiences of aging, labor market participation and caregiving relationships.
Article
COVID-19 pandemic and the health crisis have highlighted and accentuated certain socioeconomic, age and gender inequalities in Chile. In this qualitative article, we ask ourselves about the transformations and diverse practices developed by two groups of different ages women in response to the policies and measures adopted in Chile during the COVID-19 pandemic. From a qualitative approach, we worked with semi-structured interviews with working mothers and older women and carried out an analysis guided by grounded theory. The results show that COVID-19 measures produced several disruptions in the daily lives of both groups, especially in their routines, use of space and time; the reconfiguration and reduction of their social and support networks to cope with the crisis, and bodily and emotional effects caused by the overload of various reproductive, care and productive tasks. We conclude that women themselves generated diverse strategies to confront the crisis experienced in the pandemic, without any action by the State to address gender and age inequalities.
Technical Report
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This report presents the results of a series of Stakeholder Outreach Forums held over 2018-19 in four regions across Canada – Greater Montréal, Québec City, Calgary, and Greater Vancouver. The outreach forums provided an opportunity for discussion of issues faced by aging immigrants in Canada. The forums built upon a SSHRC Insight Development Grant titled Intersecting Identities and Interlocking Oppressions, led by Drs. Shari Brotman, Sharon Koehn, and Ilyan Ferrer. This research resulted in the development of a narrative photovoice exhibit entitled The Lived Experiences of Aging Immigrants. Our outreach forums brought together stakeholders from multiple sectors to share information and strategize about the actions necessary to improve recognition and support for aging immigrants. Strategic theme areas were chosen for the forums in consultation with community partners, based on findings from the research project. The Lived Experiences of Aging Immigrants photo exhibit and short presentations by key community leaders served as a catalyst for discussions at the forums. The discussions at the forums drew on participants’ decades of knowledge and action around various forms of exclusion and precarity experienced by older immigrants. This report summarizes discussions at the forums on four key theme areas: (1) caregiving; (2) social inclusion; (3) housing; and (4) transportation. The purpose of this report is to provide insight into common problems faced by older immigrants in urban areas in Canada and to inform community action and policymaking at municipal and provincial levels of governance.
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In this chapter, the authors explore what more-than-human approaches can contribute to development research, teaching and practice. The authors believe that this work is timely as development studies and practice have yet to engage with more-than-human insights in any significant way. They first develop the concept of more-than-human development before analysing the challenges it poses to how we conceptualize and approach core development concerns such as community and empowerment. They then reflect on the ramifications of the concept for practice and policy, before finally exploring how to incorporate more-than-human approaches into pedagogy.
Article
Evidence that immigrants tend to be underserved by the health-care system in the hosting country is well documented. While the impacts of im/migration on health-care utilisation patterns have been addressed to some extent in the existing literature, the conventional approach tends to homogenise the experience of racialised and White immigrants, and the intersecting power axes of racialisation, immigration and old age have been largely overlooked. This paper aims to consolidate three macro theories of health/behaviours, including Bronfenbrenner's ecological theory, the World Health Organization's paradigm of social determinants of health and Andersen's Behavioral Model of Health Service Use, to develop and validate an integrated multilevel framework of health-care access tailored for racialised older immigrants. Guided by this framework, a narrative review of 35 Canadian studies was conducted. Findings reveal that racial minority immigrants’ vulnerability in accessing health services are intrinsically linked to a complex interplay between racial-nativity status with numerous markers of power differences. These multilevel parameters range from socio-economic challenges, cross-cultural differences, labour and capital adequacy in the health sector, organisational accessibility and sensitivity, inter-sectoral policies, to societal values and ideology as forms of oppression. This review suggests that, counteracting a prevailing discourse of personal and cultural barriers to care, the multilevel framework is useful to inform upstream structural solutions to address power imbalances and to empower racialised immigrants in later life.
Article
The health consequences of systemic racism and ageism have received growing attention as the coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic has illuminated long-standing inadequacies and injustices that are structurally engrained in our health systems. The current State of the Science Commentary addresses the intersecting influences of systemic racism and ageism, and other "-isms" that conspire to create disparate health outcomes for older adults from historically excluded and marginalized backgrounds. We focus specifically on the long-term care sector as a representative microcosm of structural inequities, while recognizing that these unjust barriers to health are widespread, endemic, and pervasive. We present a call to action for gerontological nursing science to engage deeply and robustly in these realities, and the ethical and scientific imperative they present to ensure that all older adults encounter just conditions for maximizing their health and well-being. [Research in Gerontological Nursing, 15(1), 6-13.].
Article
Este artículo presenta los resultados de una investigación que explora las trayectorias y experiencias políticas de mujeres mayores chilenas en sus espacios de participación política y activismo. A través de un diseño metodológico cualitativo e inductivo, se realizaron entrevistas en profundidad, de carácter biográfico, a mujeres activistas mayores de 60 años que habitan y reflexionan en diversos campos posicionales de la vida social y política en Santiago de Chile. Desde la gerontología feminista y estudios interseccionales, se analiza e interpreta la información empírica producida. Los resultados permiten concluir que la participación política y el activismo femenino en la vejez se articula sobre la base de tres ejes: el lugar de la trayectoria biográfica y socio-histórica de participación política y activismo a lo largo de la vida; experiencias y situaciones de violencias y discriminación por razón de género y edad; y el despliegue de ciertas estrategias de resistencia de agencia colectiva. Se reflexiona sobre el accionar colectivo de mujeres mayores y cómo la deuda histórica de politización de la vejez femenina puede hoy encontrar cabida en los múltiples contextos en que se gestan los actuales movimientos sociales y feministas.
Article
Background and Objectives Spatial practices and changing urban environments affecting identity, experiences, and everyday life were examined among a diverse sample of older adults as they negotiated and navigated an age-friendly city. Research Design and Methods Ethnographic interviews, observations, and visual methods were used to understand spatial practices and lived experiences of four older adults, who chronicled their lives using disposable cameras. Results Informant identities emerged in their everyday practices, reflecting varied positionalities that fundamentally shaped their notions of “age-friendly.” Informants sought to sustain or improve their lives while attempting to negotiate socio-environmental forms and forces that often threatened their identity and increased their precarity. Discussion and Implications Contrast exists between “invariant” macro/meso issues all older adults face as they age and “multivariant” ways in which age is accomplished based on place, biography, and intersectionality. Age-friendly environments may simultaneously maintain the status quo and exacerbate inequalities. Gerontology must take seriously how stratified life chances can undermine seemingly universal potential benefits of age-friendly environments.
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Article
This retrospective study examined developmental trajectories of women’s body image perceptions throughout the adult life span from life course and self-discrepancy theory perspectives. Data were collected from women over 65 years of age, recruited from 15 senior communities and centers in a Midwest U.S. state in 2012. A total of 102 older women completed a survey about their past and current body image perceptions. To examine developmental trajectories of the repeated body image measures, a latent growth modeling analysis was adopted. Distinct and significant trajectories in each body image measure during the entire adult life course were found, confirming that a retrospective account of women’s body image perceptions significantly change with age. The individual differences in the trajectories over time and the relationship between an individual’s initial mean level and the rate of change on each variable were also examined. The findings advanced understanding of the retrospective age effects on women’s body image throughout the adult life span.
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This study examines how the intersecting consequences of race-ethnicity, gender, socioeconomics status (SES), and age influence health inequality. We draw on multiple-hierarchy stratification and life course perspectives to address two main research questions. First, does racial-ethnic stratification of health vary by gender and/or SES? More specifically, are the joint health consequences of racial-ethnic, gender, and socioeconomic stratification additive or multiplicative? Second, does this combined inequality in health decrease, remain stable, or increase between middle and late life? We use panel data from the Health and Retirement Study (N = 12,976) to investigate between- and within-group differences in in self-rated health among whites, blacks, and Mexican Americans. Findings indicate that the effects of racial-ethnic, gender, and SES stratification are interactive, resulting in the greatest racial-ethnic inequalities in health among women and those with higher levels of SES. Furthermore, racial-ethnic/gender/SES inequalities in health tend to decline with age. These results are broadly consistent with intersectionality and aging-as-leveler hypotheses.
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This paper reflects on the understanding of contemporary forms of identity construction within the fields of ethnicity, migration and transnational population movements. It casts a critical eye on new forms of identity hailed by the related notions of diaspora, hybridity and cosmopolitanism. The paper also reflects on the concept of intersectionality which provides a more integrated analysis of identity formation by arguing for the inter-connections between social divisions, such as those of gender, ethnicity and class. The paper argues that the concept 'translocational positionality' (see Anthias) is a useful means of addressing some of the difficulties identified within these approaches. This concept addresses issues of identity in terms of locations which are not fixed but are context, meaning and time related and which therefore involve shifts and contradictions. It thereby provides an intersectional framing for the understanding of belonging. As an intersectional frame it moves away from the idea of given 'groups' or 'categories' of gender, ethnicity and class, which then intersect (a particular concern of some intersectionality frameworks), and instead pays much more attention to social locations and processes which are broader than those signalled by this.
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This article assesses the economic precariousness faced by Filipina live-in caregivers during and after the Live-in Caregiver Program (LCP). Using survey data and focus group interviews, we argue that live-in caregivers’ unique pathway to immigration lead them to face economic challenges that are distinct from other immigrants. Not only do live-in caregivers face onerous employment conditions under the LCP, they have difficulties transitioning into the Canadian labour market because they face the following challenges: being stigmatized when entering the Canadian labour market, having to take costly educational upgrading courses while simultaneously working in ‘survival’ jobs, and having to be their families’ sole breadwinners. Despite these structural barriers, however, the live-in caregivers in our study strove to transition into Canadian society through their resilience and hard work. Regardless of the economic challenges that they themselves faced during and after the LCP, most saw their future in Canada and felt that coming to the country was “worth it.” Résumé: Cet article évalue la précarité économique que connaît les aides familiaux résidants philippines pendant et après le Programme des aides familiaux résidants (PAFR). En utilisant les données d'enquête et des entrevues de groupes de discussion, nous soutenons que la voie particulière réservée aux aidants à l'immigration comporte des défis économiques qui sont distincts de ceux des autres immigrants. Non seulement les aides familiaux résidants sont-elles confrontées à des conditions d'emploi rigoureux sous le PAFR, mais leur transition vers le marché du travail canadien est difficile à plusieurs égards: elles sont stigmatisés en entrant dans le marché du travail canadien, elles doivent prendre des cours coûteux de perfectionnement tout en travaillant dans des emplois «de survie», et elles sont souvent seuls soutiens de leurs familles. En dépit de ces obstacles structurels, les aides familiaux résidants dans notre étude se sont efforcés de faire la transition à la société canadienne grâce à leur résilience et le travail acharné. Quels que soient les défis économiques qu'elles rencontrent pendant et après le PAFR, la plupart d'entre elles voient leur avenir au Canada et estiment que venir au pays « en a valu la peine. »
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This article contributes to the growing debate on intersectionality by proposing a theoretical framing which attends to different levels of analysis in terms of what is being referred to (social categories or concrete social relations); societal arenas of investigation; and historicity (processes and outcomes). It discusses questions of social ontology, categories, groupings and more concrete social relations relating to boundaries and hierarchies in social life. The article presents a particular analytical sensitivity which attends to the dialogical nature of social relations, the centrality of power and social hierarchy, and the importance of locating these within spatial and temporal contexts.
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Research on subjective experiences of dementia has paid scant attention to social location, due to fairly homogeneous samples and an inattention to socio-cultural diversity in data analysis. This article addresses this gap by presenting findings from a grounded theory study of the relationships between the experiences of older people with dementia and the intersections of ‘race’, ethnicity, class, and gender. Data generation occurred through a series of interviews, participant observation sessions, and focus groups with eight older people with dementia whose social locations varied from multiply marginalized to multiply privileged plus over 50 members of their social worlds. Their experiences of dementia were found to be varied, ranging from ‘not a big deal’ to ‘a nuisance’ to ‘hellish’, and to be related to their social locations. Negative views of life with dementia were not nearly as universal as past literature suggests and social location was found to mediate experiences of dementia.
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This paper is an ethnographic exploration of a seldom-discussed ‘micro’ dimension of transnational studies, the practices of long-distance family relations and aged care. The importance of time as a key variable in transnational research is demonstrated through comparisons of the care exchanges of three cohorts of Italian migrants in Australia and their kin in Italy. A focus on ‘transnationalism from below’, the more quotidian and domestic features of transmigrant experience, highlights the importance of considering the role of homeland kin and communities in discussions of migration. The analysis of transnational care-giving practices illustrates that migrancy is sometimes triggered by the need to give or receive care rather than the more commonly assumed ‘rational’ economic motivations. Transnational lives are thus shaped by the ‘economies of kinship’, which develop across changing state (‘macro’), community (‘meso’) and family migration (‘micro’) histories, including, in particular, culturally constructed notions of ‘ideal’ family relations and obligations, as well as notions of ‘successful’ migration and ‘licence to leave’.
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This paper uses an intersectionality theoretical lens to interrogate selected findings of a scoping review of published and grey literature on the health and health care access of ethnocultural minority older adults. Our focus was on Canada and countries with similar immigrant populations and health care systems. Approximately 3300 source documents were reviewed covering the period 1980-2010: 816 met the eligibility criteria; 183 were Canadian. Summarized findings were presented to groups of older adults and care providers for critical review and discussion. Here we discuss the extent to which the literature accounts for the complexity of categories such as culture and ethnicity, recognizes the compounding effects of multiple intersections of inequity that include social determinants of health as well as the specificities of immigration, and places the experience of those inequities within the context of systemic oppression. We found that Canada’s two largest immigrant groups— Chinese and South Asians—had the highest representation in Canadian literature but, even for these groups, many topics remain unexplored and the heterogeneity within them is inadequately captured. Some qualitative literature, particularly in the health promotion and cultural competency domains, essentializes culture at the expense of other determinants and barriers, whereas the quantitative literature suffers from oversimplification of variables and their effects often due to the absence of proportionally representative data that captures the complexity of experience in minority groups.
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Europe is now home to a significant and diverse population of older international migrants. Social and demographic changes have forced the issue of social security in old age onto the European social policy agenda in the last decade. In spite of an increased interest in the financial well-being of older people, many retired international migrants who are legally resident in the European Union face structured disadvantages. Four linked factors are of particular importance in shaping the pension rights and levels of financial provision available to individual older migrants: migration history, socio-legal status, past relationship to the paid labour market, and location within a particular EU Member State. Building on a typology of older migrants, the paper outlines the ways in which policy at both the European Union and Member State levels serves to diminish rather than enhance the social security rights of certain older international migrants.
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The ‘Barriers to Access to Care for Ethnic Minority Seniors’ (BACEMS) study in Vancouver, British Columbia, found that immigrant families torn between changing values and the economic realities that accompany immigration cannot always provide optimal care for their elders. Ethnic minority seniors further identified language barriers, immigration status, and limited awareness of the roles of the health authority and of specific service providers as barriers to health care. The configuration and delivery of health services, and health-care providers' limited knowledge of the seniors' needs and confounded these problems. To explore the barriers to access, the BACEMS study relied primarily on focus group data collected from ethnic minority seniors and their families and from health and multicultural service providers. The applicability of the recently developed model of ‘candidacy’, which emphasises the dynamic, multi-dimensional and contingent character of health-care access to ethnic minority seniors, was assessed. The candidacy framework increased sensitivity to ethnic minority seniors' issues and enabled organisation of the data into manageable conceptual units, which facilitated translation into recommendations for action, and revealed gaps that pose questions for future research. It has the potential to make Canadian research on the topic more co-ordinated. Also available at http://pubmedcentralcanada.ca/articlerender.cgi?accid=PMC3693980 (open access)
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Incorporating diverse experiences into gerontological theory, research, and practice is necessary for understanding the lives of all old people, and not only "special groups." I begin by explaining how incorporating diversity exposes the power relations constitutive of lived experiences. Using examples from retirement research, I demonstrate that starting with the voices of those with less power renders a more complete view of social reality. Further, a wider understanding of aging in the United States mandates that we move to the international-comparative level. This enables us to more closely scrutinize the often unquestioned structural and ideological processes that construct divergent aging experiences as well as to conceptualize alternatives. I conclude, then, by noting that a more inclusive approach forces us to see all aging experiences not as determined but rather as fluid, dialectical, contextual--and changeable through human actions.
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Transitions and the life course: Challenging the constructions of 'growing old' explores and challenges dominant interpretations of transitions as they relate to ageing and the life course. It takes a unique perspective that draws together ideas about late life as expressed in social policy and socio-cultural constructs of age with lived experience. The book is aimed at academics and students interested in social gerontology, policy studies in health and social care, and older people's accounts of experience.
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This review explores historical changes in generational relations in American society as they affect adaptation to the later years of life. Following a life course perspective, the review examines changes in the timing of life transitions, in family relations, and in generational and kin assistance and their impact on support in old age. In doing so, it demonstrates the significance of a historical and life course approach to the understanding of generational relations over time. Dispelling prevailing myths about coresidence and generational assistance in the past, the review discusses the circumstances under which nuclear household arrangements were modified and explores patterns of assistance inside and outside the household. It links demographic changes in the timing of life course transitions with patterns of supports to aging parents in the context of changing reciprocities among kin. By comparing two cohorts of adult children in an American community in terms of their supports to aging parents, as well as their attitudes toward generational assistance, the review identifies historical changes in the relations between generations in the larger context of family relations and kin assistance.
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Although women have long been members of the labour force, the proportion of domestic, caring, and community work they provide compared to men or the state has yet to decrease substantially. Beyond Caring Labour to Provisioning Work offers a powerful new framework for understanding women's work in a holistic sense, acknowledging both their responsibilities in supporting others as well as their employment duties. Beyond Caring Labour to Provisioning Work is based on a four-year, multi-site study of women who are members of contemporary community organizations. The authors reveal the complex ways in which these women define and value their own work, investigating what supports and constrains their individual and collective efforts. Calling on the state to assist more with citizens' provisioning responsibilities, Beyond Caring Labour to Provisioning Work provides an excellent basis for new discussions on equitable and sustainable public policies.
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Series: Routledge Advances in Sociology This groundbreaking collection is the first to focus specifically on LGBT* people and dementia. It brings together original chapters from leading academics, practitioners and LGBT* individuals affected by dementia. Multidisciplinary and international in scope, it includes authors from the UK, USA, Canada and Australia and from a range of fields, including sociology, social work, psychology, health care and socio-legal studies. Taking an intersectional approach – i.e. considering the plurality of experiences and the multiple, interacting relational positions of everyday life – LGBT Individuals Living with Dementia addresses topics relating to concepts, practice and rights. Part One addresses theoretical and conceptual questions; Part Two discusses practical concerns in the delivery of health and social care provision to LGBT* people living with dementia; and Part Three explores socio-legal issues relating to LGBT* people living with dementia. This collection will appeal to policy makers, commissioners, practitioners, academics and students across a range of disciplines. With an ageing and increasingly diverse population, and growing numbers of people affected by dementia, this book will become essential reading for anyone interested in understanding the needs of, and providing appropriate services to, LGBT* people affected by dementia. Foreword by Murna Downs, Professor in Dementia Studies, School of Dementia Studies, University of Bradford, UK: 'This edited collection is a milestone in our field'. May 2016 | 272 pages | 2 B/W Illus Hb: 978-1-138-84069-0: £95.00 £76.00* Amazon Kindle Edition : £34.99 *Offer cannot be used in conjunction with any other offer or discount and only applies to books purchased directly via our website.
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Relating closely to globalisation trends, the context for the chapter by Sandra Torres is the interconnection between international migration flows and the ways in which such migration is changing the demographics of ageing populations across the world and societies' ethnic composition. In examining contrasting approaches to exploring exclusion issues by social gerontologists and researchers who focus on international migration and ethnic relations, the chapter argues that the diversity of older migrants poses a challenge to social gerontology's theoretical, policy- and practice-oriented assumptions regarding who migrants are and what they need. While the 'migratory life-course' is associated with specific exclusionary risks, the mechanisms of social exclusion work differently according to when, why and where older migrants to western industrialised nations have come from. An ethnicity and race-aware take on social exclusion is shown to challenge taken-for-granted assumptions that well-designed policies and practices can reduce exclusion in later life.
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The mission statements and recruitment campaigns for modern Canadian universities promote diverse and enlightened communities. Racism in the Canadian University questions this idea by examining the ways in which the institutional culture of the academy privileges Whiteness and Anglo-Eurocentric ways of knowing. Often denied and dismissed in practice as well as policy, the various forms of racism still persist in the academy. This collection, informed by critical theory, personal experience, and empirical research, scrutinizes both historical and contemporary manifestations of racism in Canadian academic institutions, finding in these communities a deep rift between how racism is imagined and how it is lived. With equal emphasis on scholarship and personal perspectives, Racism in the Canadian University is an important look at how racial minority faculty and students continue to engage in a daily struggle for safe, inclusive spaces in classrooms and among peers, colleagues, and administrators.
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Using a feminist political economy approach, contributors document the impact of current socio-economic policies on states, markets, households, and communities. Relying on impressive empirical research, they argue that women bear the costs of and responsibility for care-giving and show that the theoretical framework provided by feminist analyses of social reproduction not only corrects the gender-blindness of most economic theories but suggests an alternative that places care-giving at its centre. In this illuminating study, they challenge feminist scholars to re-engage with materialism and political economy to engage with feminism.
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Acknowledgments 1. Introduction to Critical Ethnography: Theory and Method Positionality and Shades of Ethnography Dialogue and the Other The Method and Theory Nexus Summary Warm-Ups Suggested Readings 2. Methods: "Do I Really Need a Method?" A Method ... or Deep Hanging-Out "Who Am I?" Starting Where You Are "Who Else Has Written About My Topic?" Being a Part of an Interpretive Community The Power of Purpose: Bracketing Your Subject Preparing for the Field: The Research Design and Lay Summary Interviewing and Field Techniques Formulating Questions Extra Tips for Formulating Questions Attributes of the Interviewer and Building Rapport Coding and Logging Data Warm-Ups Suggested Readings 3. Three Stories: Case Studies in Critical Ethnography Case One: Local Activism in West Africa Case Two: Secrets of Sexuality and Personal Narrative Case Three: Community Theatre Conflicts and Organization Warm-Ups Suggested Readings 4. Ethics Defining Ethics Critical Ethnography and the Ethics of Reason, the Greater Good, and the Other Maria Lugones: Contemporary Ethics, Ethnography, and Loving Perception Warm-Ups Suggested Readings 5. Methods and Ethics Codes of Ethics for Fieldwork Extending the Codes Warm-Ups Suggested Readings 6. Methods and Application: Three Case Studies in Ethical Dilemmas Case One: Local Activism in West Africa Case Two: Secrets of Sexuality and Personal Narrative Case Three: Community Theatre Conflicts and Organization Warm-Ups Suggested Readings 7. Performance Ethnography Foundational Concepts in Performance and Social Theory The Performance Interventions of Dwight Conquergood Staging Ethnography and the Performance of Possibilities Warm-Ups Suggested Readings 8. It's Time to Write: Writing as Performance Getting Started: In Search of the Muse The Anxiety of Writing: Wild Mind and Monkey Mind Writing as Performance and Performance as Writing Warm-Ups Suggested Readings 9. The Case Studies Case One: Staging Cultural Performance Case Two: Oral History and Performance Case Three: The Fieldwork of Social Drama and Communitas Warm-Ups Suggested Readings References Index About the Author
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The globalisation of international migration has increased the ethnic diversity of most ageing populations across the Western world. This has implications for gerontological research, policy and practice, and puts our understandings of ethnicity to the test. This paper presents the different perspectives that inform ethnicity scholarship (the essentialist/primordial perspective, the structuralist/circumstantialist perspective and social constructionism) and suggests that the way in which we regard ethnicity has implications for how gerontological research is designed, how policies for old age are formulated and how gerontological practice is shaped. Through a review of contemporary gerontological research on ethnicity published in some of gerontology's main journals, the paper discusses some of the trends observed and concludes that most research seems to be informed by essentialism and structuralism. This suggests that the gerontological imagination on ethnicity has yet to be informed by the latest developments in ethnicity scholarship. The paper therefore urges gerontologists to broaden their understanding of ethnicity and suggests that much could be gained if we were to let the social constructionist perspective on ethnicity and the notion of intersectionality be sources of inspiration for the gerontological imagination on ethnicity.
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Research on minority ethnic ageing remains a neglected area within mainstream race and ethnicity studies as well as that of social gerontology. This paper examines the background and reasons for this, arguing that a focus on minority ethnic issues provides a reminder of the complexity of the lifecourse, and of the diversity of ageing as a cultural, economic and social construction. The discussion reviews definitions of ethnicity and their relevance to work in social gerontology. The paper provides an account of early studies of minority ethnic ageing, identifying the strengths and limitations of this research. Later work is then considered, notably that focusing on issues connected with the rise of transnational communities and the changing character of neighbourhoods in urban environments. The paper argues that developing research on minority ethnic ageing has become especially important for understanding the impact of globalisation on re-defining communities, relationships and identities, within and beyond nation states. Globalisation, it is suggested, can be seen as a product of the movement of ethnic groups; equally, ethnic groups are themselves transformed by the possibilities created by global change. The paper concludes with a number of suggestions for embedding work on ethnicity within research in social gerontology.
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The aging population is becoming more ethnically diverse. This diversity will require more culturally competent social workers in the field of aging. To be successful in preparing the next generation of social workers, educators must consider introducing ethno-gerontology through-out the curriculum and not overly rely on a specialization or concentration in aging to close the gap. The article provides a history of ethnogerontology and presents its value in preparing culturally competent social workers. It also introduces theoretical frameworks within ethnogerontology. The author presents models to increase ethnogerontology content in the social work curriculum. [Article copies available for a fee from The Haworth Docu-ment Delivery Service: 1-800-HAWORTH.
Article
This article identifies five key considerations for adopting and mainstreaming intersectionality: the language and concepts that are used; the complexities of difference and how to navigate this complexity; the choice of focusing on identities, categories, processes, and/or systems; the model that is used to explain and describe mutually constituted differences; and the principles that determine which interactions are analyzed. The author argues that in the process of mainstreaming intersectionality, it is crucial to frame it as a form of social critique so as to foreground its radical capacity to attend to and disrupt oppressive vehicles of power.
Article
The life course has emerged over the past 30 years as a major research paradigm. Distinctive themes include the relation between human lives and a changing society, the timing of lives, linked or interdependent lives, and human agency. Two lines of research converged in the formation of this paradigm during the 1960s; one was associated with an older "social relationship" tradition that featured intergenerational studies, and the other with more contemporary thinking about age. The emergence of a life course paradigm has been coupled with a notable decline in socialization as a research framework and with its incorporation by other theories. Also, the field has seen an expanding interest in how social change alters people's lives, an enduring perspective of sociological social psychology.
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This article discusses the position of older women in gender theory and in social gerontology. It shows how older women are made invisible in gender theory through the selection of arenas and themes, by model monopoly and by a lack of problematization of age. In the social gerontological field, older women have frequently been objects of research. However, double jeopardy assumptions have resulted in a perspective that foregrounds misery. Results from focus group interviews with women aged 75 and over, shed light on ageing as a process of development and on twofold bodily meanings, such as on-stage-body and off-stage-body. Thus, based on an approach of age and gender as intertwining systems, the article argues for a more complex understanding of the intersection of age and gender.
Article
This article examines the politics of reproductive labor in globalization. Using the case of migrant Filipina domestic workers, the author presents the formation of a three-tier transfer of reproductive labor in globalization between the following groups of women: (1) middle-class women in receiving nations, (2) migrant domestic workers, and (3) Third World women who are too poor to migrate. The formation of this international division of labor suggests that reproduction activities, as they have been increasingly commodified, have to be situated in the context of the global market economy. This division of labor is a structural process that determines the migration of Filipina domestic workers. As such, this article also uses in-depth interviews to examine and enumerate the contradictions that migrant Filipina domestic workers experience in their family and work lives as a result of "being in the middle" of this division of labor.
Article
This article reflects on the challenges and contradictions of studying adult lives in contemporary times. It highlights complexities related to age, variability, social change, risk and uncertainty, institutional contexts, politics, and interdependence. It discusses how life-course sociology and life-span psychology might together better inform these and other themes. It also identifies key points of divergence and convergence between the two fields, what these might mean for their future separation, cooperation, or integration, and how the barriers between them might be overcome.
Article
This review explores historical changes in generational relations in American society as they affect adaptation to the later years of life. Following a life course perspective, the review examines changes in the timing of life transitions, in family relations, and in generational and kin assistance and their impact on support in old age. In doing so, it demonstrates the significance of a historical and life course approach to the understanding of generational relations over time. Dispelling prevailing myths about coresidence and generational assistance in the past, the review discusses the circumstances under which nuclear household arrangements were modified and explores patterns of assistance inside and outside the household. It links demographic changes in the timing of life course transitions with patterns of supports to aging parents in the context of changing reciprocities among kin. By comparing two cohorts of adult children in an American community in terms of their supports to aging parents, as w...
Article
The aging population is becoming more ethnically diverse. This diversity will require more culturally competent social workers in the field of aging. To be successful in preparing the next generation of social workers, educators must consider introducing ethno-gerontology throughout the curriculum and not overly rely on a specialization or concentration in aging to close the gap. The article provides a history of ethnogerontology and presents its value in preparing culturally competent social workers. It also introduces theoretical frameworks within ethnogerontology. The author presents models to increase ethnogerontology content in the social work curriculum.
Article
The promises of developmental sciences depend on whether researchers are able to bridge disparate disciplinary orientations and intellectual chasms, further several emerging debates, and overcome many theoretical and methodological barriers, most of which involve time or place in some form. This book is about those challenges. It explicates and critiques the central propositions and controversies in life-course sociology, life-span developmental psychology, and other disciplines; it searches for points of similarity and points of departure between them; and it discusses the emergence of developmental science as a field in its own right. While the book draws most heavily on research on adult development and aging, the challenges discussed herein relate to all life periods. One of the challenges facing developmental scientists is the need to extend theory and research beyond specific life periods and toward the whole of human life. This book focuses on many of the central concepts, measures, and strategies for crafting research on age, cohort, and life course. As such, it stands as a critique of the current state of research on the life course, and is intended to serve as a resource for those who would like to conduct life-course research. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
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This article focuses on the disparate impact of Canadian pension policy on women as compared to men, which in turn contributes to the poverty experienced by elderly women in retirement. The major contributing factor is the increasing privatization of the responsibility for economic security in Canada, with a preference for reliance on the private market or private family rather than on the state to provide for the welfare of its citizens. The article discusses the negative impact on women of issues such as the trend towards the establishment of defined contribution workplace pension plans rather than defined contributions plans, the increasing use of tax expenditures to encourage private retirement savings, and pension income splitting. The analysis takes place against the backdrop of the socio-economic realities of women’s lives and concludes that public pensions such as the Old Age Security pension and the Canada Pension Plan must be strengthened if women’s economic inequality in retirement is to be redressed.
Article
This qualitative study explores the international migration patterns and the family lives of older adults. Informants (N = 54) reported that they came to the United States to help out their grown children with housekeeping, child care, and domestic economizing. They described how they strategically navigated U.S. immigration laws choosing to visit, immigrate, or naturalize in order to balance their ties to the United States and their homeland. Their transnational loyalties sometimes led to lives that did not strictly match their visa categories. There were “permanent” temporary visitors, U.S. permanent residents who maintained a “permanent” home elsewhere, and U.S. citizens who had naturalized in order to spend more time abroad. Implications of the findings for immigration policy and family practice are discussed.
Article
In contrast to recent treatment of other social identities, geographers’ work on age still focuses disproportionately on the social-chronological margins – the very young and (to a far lesser extent) the very old – and rarely connects them directly. We outline the benefits of creating relational geographies of age, in order to build out from the recent explosion of children's geographies, and discuss three helpful concepts: intergenerationality, intersectionality and lifecourse. We suggest that participation provides one epistemological vehicle for getting beyond geographies which are mainly adults’.
Chapter
Age is important from the perspectives of societies, groups, and individuals. For societies, the meanings and uses of age are often formal. For example, age underlies the organization of family, educational, work, and leisure institutions and organizations. Many laws and policies structure rights, responsibilities, and entitlements on the basis of age, whether through explicit age-related rules or implicit judgments about the nature of particular life periods. At the same time, members of a society, or large subgroups of the population, may share informal ideas about the changes that occur between birth and death, and how these changes are significant. For example, age may be tied to common notions about appropriate behavior or the proper timing and progression of experiences and roles.
Article
This article examines compassion fatigue within double duty caregiving, defined here as the provision of care to elderly relatives by practicing nurses. Using qualitative data from our two studies of Canadian double duty caregivers, we identified and interviewed 20 female registered nurses whom we described as "living on the edge." The themes of context, characteristics, and consequences emerged from the findings. In this article, we argue that being both a nurse and a daughter leads to the blurring of boundaries between professional and personal care work, which ultimately predisposed these caregivers to compassion fatigue. We found that the context of double duty caregiving, specifically the lack of personal and professional resources along with increasing familial care expectations, shaped the development of compassion fatigue. Nurse-daughters caring for elderly parents under intense and prolonged conditions exhibited certain characteristics, such as being preoccupied and absorbed with their parents' health needs. The continual negotiation between professional and personal care work, and subsequent erosion of those boundaries, led to adverse health consequences experienced by the nurse-daughters. The study findings point to the need to move beyond the individualistic conceptualization and medical treatment of compassion fatigue to one that recognizes the inherent socio-economic and political contextual factors associated with compassion fatigue. Advocating for practice and policy changes at the societal level is needed to decrease compassion fatigue amongst double duty caregivers. In this article we review the compassion fatigue literature, report our most recent study methods and findings, and discuss our conclusions.
Article
By analyzing the migration behavior and transnational residential strategies of first-generation, aging migrants from a particular Moroccan sending region, this study contributes to a conceptual critique of migration theories that identify the household as the most relevant decisionmaking unit. It highlights the role of intra-household power inequalities and conflicts in migration decisionmaking as well as the effects of migration decisions for intra-household power relations. Many labor migrants who left Morocco to work in Europe in the 1960s and 1970s did not realize their wish to return but instead ended up reunifying their families at the destination. An increasing proportion adopts a pendulum migration strategy to reconcile their own wish to retain strong ties with Morocco with the reluctance of children and spouses to return. Migrants who unilaterally decided not to reunify their families usually return after their active working life. However, this unilateral decision also blocks legal entry into Europe for their children, which has generated considerable intergenerational tensions.
Article
This study examines whether the racial disparity in functional health grows unabated over the adult life course--the cumulative disadvantage hypothesis--or shrinks among the oldest old---the age-as-leveler hypothesis. Special emphasis is placed on the role of socioeconomic status (SES), which is highly associated with race. The analysis uses latent growth-curve modeling to examine differences in age trajectories of functional health between Black and White Americans and is based on nationally representative panel data of 3497 adults. Results cautiously support the age-as-leveler hypothesis. Net of functional health at baseline, Black adults experience a growing disadvantage in functional health over time until the oldest ages, when the gap in functional health begins to shrink. Results indicate that the potential leveling mechanisms of age may be specific to women. SES including financial assets explains the divergence in functional health across young and middle-aged Black and White adults, but not the later-life convergence. This study reveals the life-course pattern of racial disparity in functional health and suggests that more theoretical development is needed in this field to explain why the age-as-leveler and cumulative disadvantage processes are different for functional health than for other outcomes.
Article
A lifecourse perspective is key for understanding and interpreting racial and ethnic patterns in neuropsychological test performance. In this article, we discuss contextual factors that shape the environmental conditions encountered by racial and ethnic minorities in the United States, in particular African-Americans. These conditions include geographic segregation at the level of regions, metropolitan areas, and neighborhoods; intra- and inter-national migration patterns; socioeconomic position, including financial resources, and occupational and educational opportunities; discrimination; and group resources. Each of these exposures sets in course a cascade of individual mediators that ultimately manifest in neuropsychological outcomes. The physiological and behavioral consequences of these pathways likely accumulate across the lifecourse. We focus on cognitive aging, although the processes discussed here begin in infancy and likely influence cognitive outcomes throughout life from childhood into old age. A lifecourse framework can help inform clinical encounters, neuropsychological research, and surveillance regarding the population prevalence of cognitive impairments.