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Old Age and Population Ageing

4. Stereotypes and Realities About Older People

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About this Lecture

Lecture

In this module, we think about some stereotypes and realities about older people and their place in society. We focus on two stereotypes in particular: (i) that they enjoy prosperous lives at the expense of more deprived younger generations; (ii) that they are a burden on younger taxpayers and do not contribute to the economy. We challenge the first by noting that many older people are relatively poor, with around 16% living in poverty, and that the wealthier amongst them often offer financial assistance to younger relatives. In relation to the second stereotype, we consider the large number of older people who contribute paid employment and voluntary work.

Course

In this course, Professor Pat Thane (Birkbeck, University of London) explores population ageing, its causes and impacts, policies related to it, and the place of older people in society. In the first module, we look at the historical process of population ageing and the first policies around old age in the early 1900s. In the second, we think about the welfare state and its effects on older people’s lives, in terms of state pensions, the National Health Service, and social care. The third module surveys policies related to population ageing from the 1970s to the present, and the fourth outlines some stereotypes and realities about older people. We conclude with a module on ageist discrimination in employment and healthcare, and the ways in which older people have protested this.

Lecturer

Professor Pat Thane is Visiting Professor in History at Birkbeck, University of London. She researches twentieth century British history, with a focus on social policy. Her recent publications include Divided Kingdom: A History of Britain, 1900 to the Present (2018), Sinners? Scroungers? Saints? Unmarried Motherhood in Twentieth Century England (2012) (with Tanya Evans) and Happy Families? History and Family Policy (2011).

Cite this Lecture

APA style

Thane, P. (2022, February 07). Old Age and Population Ageing - Stereotypes and Realities About Older People [Video]. MASSOLIT. https://massolit.io/courses/old-age-and-population-ageing/stereotypes-and-realities-about-older-people

MLA style

Thane, P. "Old Age and Population Ageing – Stereotypes and Realities About Older People." MASSOLIT, uploaded by MASSOLIT, 07 Feb 2022, https://massolit.io/courses/old-age-and-population-ageing/stereotypes-and-realities-about-older-people

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