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Theorizing Later Life - Theorizing Later Life The...

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Theorizing Later Life The Modernization Theory claims that industrialization and modernization have lowered the power and influence which the elderly once had and that this has lead to much exclusion of elderly from community roles. Even though this theory is not as well established and is somewhat controversial, it has made a place in science for understanding how large-scale social forces have impacted the individual and collective lives of the elderly. In our modern societies: the economy has grown to a state that has created new levels of prosperity for most; the new technologies have outpaced the ability of the elderly to understand and use them; and the elderly are living much longer and are not essential to the economic survival of the family as was the case for millennia. Modernization can help us to understand why the elderly have become stigmatized and devalued over the last century. Who make up the generations of our day? Look at Figure 4 below to see birth rates and generation labels for the United States. First notice the red and blue lines. The red represents the
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