Document Type

Honors Project


This paper is an analysis of aging within a broader social context. The traditional deficit-oriented perspective on aging provides an incomplete and often damaging theoretical framework. Pervasive stereotypes about psychological decline in later life may also be self-perpetuating. Focusing on deficits also does not take into account the importance of subjective well-being and qualitative shifts in world perspective that often accompany the later years. An increased interest in the strengths of older adults will help to counteract ageism and enables older adults to live meaningful and valued lives. Applications for the breaking of stereotype cycles and promotion of generative behavior across the life course are discussed.



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