As the global population ages, disability demographics are shifting. Societal change and global health inequities have changed who is likely to live to old age, who is likely to live with disability, and the relationship between aging and disability in different socio-cultural and geopolitical contexts.
One thing is clear: aging is a pressing issue across the Western world, and will become more so in the years ahead. Yet scholarship that focuses on the disciplinary nexus of disability studies and aging studies has not been considered comprehensively. The Aging–Disability Nexus breaks new ground by bringing gerontology and disability studies into dialogue with each other. This thoughtful examination of competing narratives about aging and disability employs a variety of empirical, conceptual, and pedagogical approaches. Contributors explore the tensions that shape how disability and aging are understood, experienced, and responded to at both individual and systemic levels, while avoiding the common tendency to conflate these overlapping elements and map them onto a normative, faulty notion of the human life trajectory.
This perceptive work analyzes the distinction between aging with a disability and aging into disability, and reveals how multiple identities, socio-economic forces, culture, and community give form to our experiences.
Students and scholars of social and cultural gerontology, critical disability studies, and feminist studies will find this book indispensable, as will practitioners in health care and social work.
I really appreciated the breadth of topics, including experiences of dance among people with Parkinson’s; an arts-based initiative called Re•Vision, which seeks to disrupt normative narratives of aging and disability; and the stories of two women aging with and aging into cognitive disability. Furthermore, with few exceptions, most theoretical discussions are illustrated with compelling real world examples.
This innovative collection explores the intersection of critical disability studies and age studies – what the authors call the ‘aging–disability nexus.’ This book will create a seismic shift in how we think about these fields.
Katie Aubrecht is a Canada Research Chair in Health Equity and Social Justice, the director of the Spatializing Care: Intersectional Disability Studies Lab, and an assistant professor of sociology at St. Francis Xavier University. She has guest edited special issues of the Canadian Journal of Disability Studies, the Review of Disability Studies: An International Journal, and Health, Culture, and Society. Christine Kelly is an assistant professor in community health sciences and a research affiliate with the Centre on Aging at the University of Manitoba. She is a co-editor, with Michael Orsini, of Mobilizing Metaphor: Art, Culture, and Disability Activism in Canada and author of Disability Politics and Care: The Challenge of Direct Funding. Carla Rice is a Canada Research Chair in Care, Gender, and Relationships in the College of Social and Applied Human Sciences at University of Guelph, and the founder and academic director of the Re•vision Centre for Art and Social Justice. She is the author of Becoming Women: The Embodied Self in Image Culture and, with May Friedman and Jen Rinaldi, co-editor of Thickening Fat: Fat Bodies, Intersectionality, and Social Justice.
Contributors: Rachel Barken, Ruth Bartlett, Akwasi Boafo, Lucy Burke, Nadine Changfoot, May Chazan, Sally Chivers, Maggie FitzGerald, Amanda Grenier, Meridith Griffin, Nancy Hansen, Alison Kafer, Nathan Kerrigan, Poland Lai, Monique Lanoix, Colleen McGrath, Anne McGuire, Margaret Oldfield, Alan Santinele Martino
Introduction / Katie Aubrecht, Christine Kelly, and Carla Rice
Part 1: Conceptualizing the Nexus
1 Aging and Disability: The Paradoxical Positions of the Chronological Life Course / Amanda Grenier, Meridith Griffin, and Colleen McGrath
2 Spectres of Unproductive Life: The Aging–Disability–Dementia Complex / Lucy Burke
3 Cripping Care Advice: Austerity, Advice Literature, and the Troubled Link between Disability and Old Age / Sally Chivers
4 Dancing In and Out of Control: Challenging the Myth of Bodily Mastery through the Lens of Parkinson’s Disease / Monique Lanoix
Part 2: Politics of Care
5 Aging, Disability, and Long-Term Care Policy: Toward a Critical Ethics of Care Approach / Maggie FitzGerald
6 Directly Funded Home Care for Older Adults: Exploring the Legacies of Disability Activism / Christine Kelly
7 Age, Disability, and Encounters with Care: Older People’s Experiences of Home Care / Rachel Barken and Alan Santinele Martino
8 Power, Agency, Aging, and Cognitive Impairment: The Stories of Two Women / Margaret Oldfield and Nancy Hansen
9 Regulation of “Care” in Long-Term Care Homes in Ontario / Poland Lai
Part 3: Timescapes and Landscapes
10 Aging with and into Disability: Futurities of New Materialisms / Nadine Changfoot and Carla Rice
11 From Boomer to Zoomer: Aging with Vitality under Neoliberal Capitalism / Anne McGuire
12 Deconstructing Dependency and Development in Global Dementia Policy / Katie Aubrecht and Akwasi Boafo
13 Aging and Disability in the Time of AIDS: Reflections from Research with Older Women Caregivers in South Africa / May Chazan
14 Disability, Age, the British Countryside, and Social Exclusion / Nathan Kerrigan
Dialogue: Speaking from the Nexus
Thinking into Aging–Disability Nexuses: A Dialogue between Two Scholars / Ruth Bartlett and Alison Kafer
Getting Wise about Getting Old
Debunking Myths about Aging
Art, Culture, and Disability Activism in Canada
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