Stereotypes of Old Men and Women essay

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Stereotypes concerning old people have been with us for a long time though people tend to ignore them. This paper examines the various examples of ageism stereotypes and compares them to other stereotypes that exist n the society e.g. sex and race. Evidently, old people, regardless of their former status in the society, go through a lot of stress when they receive ill treatment by the younger folk, thus worsening their social, physical, and psychological statuses. Studies have always shown the adverse stereotyping of older men and women. Nevertheless, several ageism inquiries have considered "the older adult". Thus, the resultant differences of ageism on menfolk and womenfolk have not been well scrutinized. The ageism research that communicates explicitly to older men and women is debated below.

The public stereotypes of old men and women have regularly emphasised society's attention only on the life-threatening portion of the old folks. However, there has been neglect for some decades enduring a vital part of the period when old people, in spite of their expertise and knowledge, are being detached from society, communal and systematized activities.

A stereotype slightly allows individual differences, which is predominantly extensive among elders. Ageism reveals itself in both explicit and implicit ways. According to Edith Stein, certain cases of negative ageism (Palmore, 1990, p. 3-4) include the fact that old folks are always hesitant for a moment since they are unconvinced about something and instantly indicted with being unwell. Old people are persistently “protected” and their opinions deduced. Also they forget other people’s names and are accused of senility and demeaned. Furthermore, the elderly are supposed to consent to the “realities of aging” and old folks fail to word or sentence and they are indicted with “being old,” but not with a hearing problem. The most common one is “the hearing problem” and when elderly people forget people’s names. The key stereotypes of older people that promote these behaviors include the ideas that old people always have ill health and that they are ever nostalgic; thus, many young people assume that old people only talk about their past times. Impotency also has a role to play on the same.

Whereas women constitute the mainstream of the older people, they have mostly been unnoticed (Block, Davidson, & Grambs, 1981). Overviews often disguise stereotypes with the older women usually categorized as inactive, unproductive, unhealthy, and asexual (Block et al., 1981). Conversely, men are labeled as progressively more feminine, but women are more vulnerable not only to the ageing stereotypes but also sexism. Ageism is more “acceptable” than sexism and racism because the former is a bodily process that has been there for a long time unavoidable. However, racism and sexism has taken a new perspective of embedding in ageism. The video by Laura (2008), has offered me an insightful motive that ageism should be a joint responsibility of friends, family, society and the government to curb this issue. In relation to life chances, race, gender/sex, class and age are dictated by the social welfares and relations of individuals. This gives a leeway on both positive and negative stereotypes.

Conclusively, men and women equally experience ageism in various practices of stereotyping. Nevertheless, these stereotypes are not sustained by experimental data concerning older men and women.

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