LAST CHAPTER LIVING
At Last Chapter Living, we know there is no limit to what older individuals and those with disabilities can accomplish. We strive to redefine ageing for everyone by challenging the stigmas that have become attached to it. Through our website and blog, we offer information focused on issues faced by olders, stories about being older, books to buy about older individuals that are written by an older individual...me. There is also a boutique that features things to make a statement...everything you need to start to your own movement in a warm, welcoming environment! Let's make sure we are making our last chapter our best chapter.
Last Chapter Living is very easy to navigate. You will always find the complete menu of pages across the top left side of the page on a desktop computer. The menu location may vary if you are using a mobile device. To help get started, here's a couple buttons to try out. Just click (or touch if you have a touch screen) on them to get to page designated...you can always come back to 'home' from the menu.
AGEISM - HOW DID WE GET TO THIS POINT
We need to know what it is before we can advocate for ourselves.
This is a brief history of ageism presented in easy to read, (at least!) once weekly bite sized pieces.
Let's start with the World Health Organization's definition of ageism.
Ageism: This refers to the stereotypes (how we think), prejudices (how we feel) and discrimination (how we act) towards others or oneself based on age.
Ageism goes back to pre-modern times (often defined by 'late medieval period (1500 A.D.) to the mid-19th century, when life expectancy was much lower. Social opinions were different and heavily influenced by religion. They held older people in higher regard than they are today. Society respected the abilities and skills of older people. Then, along comes the industrial revolution.
The second half of the 19th century lent itself well to invention. Using these inventions created in the US and those imported from Europe led to industrial urban areas. The need to 'follow the money' caused families to move from the farms that had been the norm for years. Moving caused the most problems for the oldest in these families, for obvious reasons. Establishing themselves in these new urban settings caused an upheaval in families as older members no longer had the authority and wisdom they had back on the farms. The labor and working hours required youth in its workers that could no longer look to their elders for wisdom and guidance in these new situations. This may well be the time in history that older people were no longer an asset but become problems.
Advances in medicine and improvements in the standard of living led to the cruel reality of additional problems in society. Older individuals were increasingly finding themselves with the need to become self supporting on the streets of factory towns.
The 20th century and the Great Depression of the 1930s exacerbated the problems even more. Concerned parties advocated for society to stop ignoring these older people, and the 1940s saw the advent of social security. Unfortunately, this resulted in even more negative feelings toward the aged.
***next, we will jump ahead to the 1960s and Lyndon Johnson's Great Society to see if there was improvement for the aged.***