In this assignment I will be looking at the effects of ageing. The way I will do this is by comparing two theorists on ageing and looking at provisions available for older aged individuals. P4 Effects of Ageing
The Activity theory
The theory was developed by Robert J. Havighurst as a response to the disengagement theory of aging.Robert James Havighurst was a professor, physicist, educator, and aging expert and he believed that a person who reached their optimal age (retirement age) is those who stay more active. The activity theory claims that staying mentally and physically active preserves older adults happier. Stretch, B and Whitehouse, M (2010, p.171) state that ‘Writing in 1966 Bromley argued that older people needed to disengage, but that they also needed to remain ‘active’ in order to prevent disengagement from going too far. Bromley said: ‘It is not sufficient merely to provide facilities for elderly people. They need to be educated to make use of them and encouraged to abandon apathetic attitudes and fixed habits. Bromley argued that it was important to remain mentally active and maintain and interact in life and enjoy the company of others. Too much disengagement would lead to ‘stagnation’ and a loss of mental and physical skills.’ Disengagement theory
Disengagement theory argues that elderly people begin to disengage from their previous social roles as they realize that they will die in the near future. The disengagement theory of aging states that "aging is an inevitable, mutual withdrawal or disengagement, resulting in decreased interaction between the aging person and others in the social system he belongs to."Disengagement theory was one of the first theories of aging developed by social scientists.The theory was developed by Elaine Cumming and Warren Earl Henry in their 1961 book "Growing Old”. Subsequently, the theory has been largely disproven. It has been stated by Stretch, B and Whitehouse, M (2010, p.170) ‘Engagement means being involved with people or activities. Disengagement means to withdraw from involvement. In 1961 two authors called Cumming and Henry put forward a disengagement theory that older people would naturally ten to withdraw from social involvement with others as they got older; older people would have restricted opportunities to interact with others.’ Cumming (1975) argued that older people would experience a reduction in social contact as they grew older and become increasingly ‘individual’ and less concerned with the expectations of others. He argued that it was appropriate and healthy for older people to withdraw from others-disengagement was a natural part of ageing. The theory of disengagement was widely accepted in the past. Bromley (1974) argued that ‘although some individuals fight the process all the way, disengagement of some sort is bound to come, simply because old people have neither the physical nor the mental resources they had when they were young.’ Zimbardo (1992) argued that ‘The disengagement view of social ageing has been largely discredited for a number of reason’. The majority of older people do remain socially involved with family and friends and many older people become more involved with close family as they become older. Cummings and Henry first proposed the theory in 1961 where there was no internet or text messaging and many older people did not have access to a car and there were a quite few who didn’t even have phones in their homes.
M2 discuss two major theories of ageing in relation to the development of the individual. Activity theory
The Activity theory has been argued that older people needed to disengage, but that they also needed to remain ‘active’ in order to prevent disengagement going too far. This means that older people need to withdraw from society however not to the extent where they find it difficult to communicate with anyone. Bromley said ‘They need to be educated to make use of them and encouraged to abandon apathetic attitudes...
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