In search of a theory for an age-welcoming society : reconstructing Canadian millennials’ expectations on their aging Journey
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Numerous essays and research studies have been conducted with the objective to understand how the aging process is experienced and what social, economic, and political factors influence that process. Critical theorists argue that Eurocentric conceptions of aging are constrained by stereotypes and prejudices that define individuals by their age. Moreover, according to a constructionism framework, such conceptions are shaped by social constructions of being and getting old. The purpose of this study is to explore how a group of 15 Canadian millennials view aging and if and how their construction of old age has an impact on their attitudes, concerns, and expectations of getting old. The data, obtained by applying a constructionist grounded theory methodology, suggest a need for empowering young adults. As a result, my hope for this research is to create a positive cultural impact that will benefit older adults, the aging journey of millennials, and the relationship to aging of new generations. My ultimate intention is to be an element of change in the creation of a new theoretical framework to support a more dignified, successful, and vital conception of aging. Furthermore, the pivotal target of this exploratory research is to lay the foundation for future research that focuses on developing actionable policies and programs in education, public policy, and media that contribute to overcoming ageism in our society. Keywords: ageism, aging, millennials and old age, reframing old age, social construction of aging
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