Social Structures: Demographic Changes and the Well-Being of Older Persons

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Significant demographic changes are altering the structure of the American population. Larger numbers of immigrants are entering the work force, will become part of our aging population, and increasingly, are providing care for the elderly. Family structures and communities are evolving as marriage, childbearing, divorce, and cohabitation trends are changing. The working population that supports the elderly, physically and economically, is also changing and will most likely become smaller and less able to support this growing population.

What does this mean for the well-being of our aging population and our efforts to ensure the quality of life for our elderly now and that we will want to enjoy ourselves as we become part of this older population?

In this volume Drs. Schaie and Uhlenberg and a host of leading scholars look at the current structure of the American population in an effort to determine the impact it will have on the lives of the elderly and those growing older with disabilities and chronic illness. They examine the effects of the aging baby boomers on health care, migration and immigration and how it can support or tax health care networks, cultural issues regarding access to health care, and changing cultural attitudes towards marriage and family that are affecting the relationships between the elderly and their communities.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780826124074
  • Publisher: Springer Publishing Company, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 3/1/2007
  • Series: Springer Series on the Societal Impact on Aging
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 312
  • Product dimensions: 6.14 (w) x 9.21 (h) x 0.75 (d)

Meet the Author

K. Warner Schaie, PhD, is the Evan Pugh Professor of Human Development and Psychology at Pennsylvania State University. He also holds an appointment as Affiliate Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Science at the University of Washington. He received his Ph.D. in psychology from the University of Washington, an honorary Dr. phil. from the Friedrich-Schiller University of Jena, Germany, and an honorary Sc.D. degree from West Virginia University. He received the Kleemeier Award for Distinguished Research Contributions from the Gerontological Society of America, the MENSA lifetime career award, and the Distinguished Scientific Contributions award from the American Psychological Association. He is author or editor of 51 books including the textbook Adult Development and Aging (5th edition, with S. L. Willis) and the Handbook of the Psychology of Aging (6th edition, with J. E. Birren). He has directed the Seattle Longitudinal Study of cognitive aging since 1956 and is the author of more than 275 journal articles and chapters on the psychology of aging. His current research interest is the life course of adult intelligence, its antecedents and modifiability, the early detection of risk for dementia, as well as methodological issues in the developmental sciences.

Peter Uhlenberg, PhD, is Professor of Sociology and Fellow of the Carolina Population Center, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. He received his PhD from the University of California, Berkeley in 1971. His current research focuses on issues related to age segregation, intergenerational relationships, and population aging. In 2006 he received the Matilda White Riley Distinguished Career Award from the Aging and Life Course Section of the American Sociological Association.

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Table of Contents


• Older Immigrants, Judith Treas & Jeanne Batalova
• Commentary: Older Immigrants: Cultural Issues in Access to
Health Care, Charlotte Ikels
• Commentary: Immigration and an Aging America: Downward Spiral or Virtuous Circle? Charles Hirschman
• Population Aging and Benefit Sustainability: The Impact of Baby Boomer Aging on the Health Care System, Stephen Crystal
• Commentary: What Havoc Will the Boomers Wreak? Robert L. Kane
• Commentary: Demographic Reflections on the Aging of the Baby Boom and its Implications for Health Care, Vicki A. Freedman
• Perspectives on the Economic Implications of the Aging of Baby
Boomers, Eric R. Kingson and Nancy H. Smith
Futures for the Baby Boom: Described, Inscribed, and Prescribed, David J. Ekerdt
• Immigration Effects on Health Care for Older People, Jacqueline L. Angel
• Commentary: Migration and Health Care for Older People: Developing a Global Perspective, Chris Phillipson
• Commentary: Immigration, Race/Ethnicity, and Health Care, Robert A. Hummer
• The Aging of the Second Demographic Transition, Mary Elizabeth Hughes & Linda J. Waite
• Commentary: The Second Demographic Transition, Aging Families and the
Aging of the Institutionalized Life Course, Dale Dannefer & Robin S. Patterson
• Commentary: Some Thoughts on Aging, Marriage, and Well-Being in Later Life, David M. Blau
• The Impact of Demographic Changes on Relations Between Age Groups and Generations: A Comparative Perspective, Gunhild O. Hagestad & Peter Uhlenberg
• Commentary: The Future of Intergenerational Relationships - Variability and Vulnerabilities, Maximiliane E. Szinovacz
• Commentary: Demographic Transitions, Age and Culture, Christine L. Fry

Author Index

Subject Index

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