Formal Writing Assignment 2: Where does ageism come from and how does it manifest at the individual and societal levels?

Formal Writing Assignment 2: Where does ageism come from and how does it manifest at the individual and societal levels? (15% of final grade)

history of ageism,

examples of ageism in society,

ageism examples,

personal ageism,

social gerontology,

gerontology and aging,

nature and scope of gerontology,

types of ageism,

Background: As discussed in class, aging has not always been seen from a negative perspective. Ageism as a concept reflects our social constructs related to aging. To fully understand ageism, we need to understand as Applewhite states, when did aging “turn from a natural process into a social problem to be solved…” Studies indicate that children’s and young adults’ perceptions of older adults are negative more often than not. How can we help children and young adults understand the social construct of age and ageism?

Main Question: Write an essay in which you explain the context for Applewhite’s concerns with aging being treated as a social problem and in which you persuade young adults to understand and avoid ageist views and behaviors.

Process: In the first writing assignment, you explored ageism from a personal perspective. In this assignment, you will develop a 3-4 page essay in which you address ageism from a broader societal perspective.

Imagine you are meeting with a visiting class of high school students who were identified as having negative views about older adults. Some of them even admit to making fun of older people when they see them driving, trying to use an ATM, or simply walking slowly down the street. Write an essay in which you explain to this group of young people why we have such negative views about aging and older people. Explain where these stereotypes come from and how these are influenced by increases in longevity and the changing roles played by older adults. Suggest activities, experiences, and behaviors the young students can follow to become more welcoming and less biased toward older people.

In your paper, you must refer to the myths Applewhite identifies as perpetuating an anti-olders agenda (pages 15 – 65 of the book).

Formal written assignments must utilize the American Psychological Association (APA) format for style, citations and references. Information on APA style is available at the Purdue OWL Writing Lab:

This paper requires the book called This Chair Rocks: A manifesto Against Ageism by Ashton Applewhite

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