Old Age Functionalism Analysis

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The definition of old age is not one that is universal. In some cultures, 50 is not considered old, but for some 40 is deemed old. This fluid definition is often created by an appearance. The gray hairs and wrinkly face are enough within some cultures to write someone off as old. In other cultures a person isn’t labeled old until they have hit a certain age milestone, i.e. becoming 60 or 65. The life span of people within that culture also influences when someone begins being “old.” If the life span within that society or culture goes to 120 then someone who is only 40 would be seen to have only lived one-third of their life and not be so old, while in a society or culture where the life span is 80 who is 40 has lived at least half their life…show more content…
The old withdraw into retirement, whether by completely leaving the workforce or slowing down their involvement in the workforce, allowing the younger generation to take its place in society. Conflict theorists do not believe that the elderly and the younger generation are moving in such harmony. Both groups, the elderly and the younger generation, are competing for the limited resources available in society. The elderly are not moving aside or slowing down to allow the younger generation to step up to the plate, they are staying apparent in society requesting and requiring just as much if not more resources that they did before. In the view of functionalists the elderly fine with being in any scene of life whether it be the intimate informal settings and activities or the public formal settings and activities. They can be satisfied just as much by staying at home doing home renovations as they are satisfied with being social. In the view of a conflict theorist, the elderly do not have such a smooth transition of moving into retirement. They are faced with a tug-and-war with the government for funds to support their living *landing* many of the elderly as members of the Gray Panthers, to lessen the gap of interest with alleviating the poverty of both the elderly and the younger generation, and/or AARP, protecting specifically the

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