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Key Concepts in Social Gerontology

Key Concepts in Social Gerontology

March 2010 | 248 pages | SAGE Publications Ltd

"I welcome this book's refreshing approach to developing an understanding of fifty major concepts being employed in social gerontology. Far from a dictionary, the concepts are portrayed as complex, and conflicting definitions and usages are both noted and evaluated. The joint UK-US authorship promotes a much needed international approach to the field—something all too lacking in most American textbooks and theoretical articles. Each article includes a (necessarily selective) set of references, and cross-references to other concepts included in the book. Readers might enjoy a 'follow the cross-reference' adventure, which will situate each concept in a set of related concepts at the same, a broader, or a narrower level. Moreover, the coverage and evaluation of the concepts is right at the current leading edge in a rapidly moving field."
—Victor Marshall, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Social gerontology is a new and dynamic field reflecting the increasing interest in aging across the world. This book provides a readily accessible guide to well established and contested issues, as well as new concepts emerging through cutting edge research in the discipline.

The entries give concise, lucid knowledge on what constitutes the 'building blocks' of social gerontology and sets out a clear review of the core concepts, both classic and emerging, in this subject area.

Each concept is explored in terms of its:

  • History
  • Application
  • Usefulness to theory and research
  • Significance in practice

They go beyond simple definition of the concepts to look at how each issue has shaped the discipline of social gerontology today.

This book is authored by social gerontologists from the UK and the USA. Together they present an interdisciplinary perspective and reflect a global approach to the presentation of key concepts in social gerontology.

Age Integration
Ageing in Place
Assisted Living
Biographical Approaches
Care Management
Civic Engagement
Convoy Theory
Cultural Ideals
Death and Dying
Elder Mistreatment/Abuse
Environmental Gerontology
Family Relations
Filial Responsibility
Global Ageing
Intergenerational Practice
Life-Course Perspective
Lifelong Learning
Long-Term Care
Palliative Care
Population Ageing
Quality of Life
Social Exclusion
Social Relations
Social Support
Social Theories of Ageing
Successful Ageing
Third and Fourth Ages
Triple Jeopardy

I was very pleasantly surprised by this book. The concepts are very clear and very relevant, and fantastic for my group of undergraduate students who do not necessarily have English as a first language, nor who are used to reading about ageing issues. I found each concept to be succinctly and simply captured, holding enough information to satisfy initial cravings and complex enough to tempt further reading. For myself, and my students, the alphabetical ordering of each concept is actually comforting, and makes for very easy referencing during discussions. I had originally thought that this book would provide ‘supplementary’ reading as part of my “Healthy Ageing” course, but have changed my mind to “essential” reading now I have had the opportunity to read the entire book.

Dr Meredith Tavener
Demography, Groningen University (RuG)
August 20, 2010

This is a very clear and concise dictionary of concepts. It provides an easy to read explanation of key terms and an explanation of the research along with key references. This allows for easy follow up of the topics. This will make an excellent 'starting point' for a student who is new to a topic, or confused about where to start with research for an essay. This title will be useful in any course that includes issues related to ageing, and will also supplement topics within the broader sociology courses. It provides an over view of the key concepts and delivers what it promises in the title.

Mrs Julie Peet
SSPSSR, University of Kent
May 3, 2010

A useful text for any student studying social gerontology. It is extremely easy to dip into providing an introduction to a variety of topics.

Dr Liam Foster
Social Science , Sheffield University
April 29, 2010

I found some sections of this exremely useful and informative - particularly the multidisciplinary nature of the discourse.

Dr Vivienne Walkup
School of Education, Derby University
April 15, 2010

A good basic text which introduces the reader to the issues and concepts of social gerontology. The work would benefit from a more global and multi-cultural perspective, its current emphasis on the UK and the USA only provides the reader with a narrow perspective.

Mrs Lynda Millard
Nursing , Manchester University
April 12, 2010

Sample Materials & Chapters


Chapter One

For instructors

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