Aging and the Life Course

Aging and the Life Course

Social and Cultural Contexts

Deborah Lowry


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Aging & the Life Course: Social & Cultural Contexts provides an accessible, up-to-date introduction to the study of aging and the life course from a distinctly sociological perspective. It explores the sociocultural dimensions of aging while encouraging critical thinking about the diversity of aging experiences, societal attitudes toward older adults, the politics and economics of growing old, and end-of-life resources. Throughout the text, Deborah Lowry emphasizes the relevance of the material for working with older populations, understanding social policy and policy debates, improving communities, relating to others, and understanding ourselves.

Organized into four major sections, Part I introduces students to fundamental demographic, sociological, and life course concepts; part II explores the experiences and conditions of aging, especially in particular groups; and part III presents current research on older adults’ engagement in work, family, social networks, and sex. Finally, Part IV addresses themes of aging and social change.


Deborah Lowry:

Deborah Lowry is associate professor of sociology in the Department of Behavioral and Social Sciences at the University of Montevallo, where she teaches a variety of courses including aging and the life course, social problems, introductory sociology, and contemporary Chinese society. Prior to a National Institutes of Health (NIH) postdoctoral research fellowship at the University of Michigan's Population Studies Center, she earned a PhD from Michigan State University with research that investigated lived experiences of aging in a rural Chinese context.