People Innovation Excellence

What You Need to Know About : Communication in Later Life

Rather sudden and quite dramatic global increases in the proportions of living older adults, together with the ever-expanding horizons of longevity, make the study of aging very timely. Being interdisciplinary, this study is explored from radically different vantage points, from the biological to the sociological. Kofi Anan, then secretary general  of the United Nations, pronounced 1999 the International Year of the Elderly and established a task force to explore the pressing implications of what he called this “silent revolution.” Although many social and physical disciplines were implicated in this enterprise, communication was not. Nonetheless, in the past few decades, our discipline has made great strides, empirically and theoretically, in enlightening us as to the ways in which communication phenomena and processes are crucial constituents of the social construction of aging.

In what follows, theories outside our discipline that provide an important backdrop to social gerontological theory will be briefly described. While focusing on older adults, these theories, rightly, often take on a so-called life span perspective. In other words, they do not vacuously look at older individuals within a narrow temporal frame (e.g., 65 and older) but, rather, identify how and why the continual management of events across the life span affects people’s later wellness. Not surprisingly, perhaps, many of these theoretical positions are also directed toward understanding and predicting successful aging, and culturally determined dimensions of self-reported life satisfaction (such as a zest for life and independence) are a critical component of this. Thereafter, communication and aging theories will be introduced.

Littlejohn, Stephen W and Karen A.Floss. (2009). Encyclopedia of Communication Theory.USA:SAGE.654

Penanggungjawab naskah :

Gayes Mahestu
Edwina Ayu Kustiawan

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