The purpose of this paper is to explore the concept of “risk” in relation to old age. Ideas are explored linked with what has been termed as the “risk society” and the extent to which it has become part of the organizing ground of how we define and organise the “personal” and “social spaces” in which to grow old in western modernity.
A theoretical paper in three parts, including: an introduction to the relevance and breakdown in trust relations; a mapping out of the key assumptions of risk society; and examples drawn from social welfarism to consolidate an understanding of the contructedness of old age in late modernity.
Part of this reflexive response to understanding risk and old age is the importance of recognising self‐subjective dimensions of emotions, trust, biographical knowledge and resources.
This discussion provides a critical narrative to the importance and interrelatedness of the sociology of risk to the study of old age.
Powell, J., Wahidin, A. and Zinn, J. (2007), "Understanding risk and old age in western society", International Journal of Sociology and Social Policy, Vol. 27 No. 1/2, pp. 65-76. https://doi.org/10.1108/01443330710722760Download as .RIS
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