Critical Themes in Indian Sociology brings together the writings of a number of scholars—both well established and younger, in India and in different parts of the world—on various themes that express the richness and diversity that defines sociological scholarship on India. The book reflects changes in scholarship over time and charts out new subjects and methods for the study of social life in India. Commemorating the 50 plus years since Contributions to Indian Sociology was first published, this book is a tribute to a journal that has sustained an internationally acclaimed and rigorous sociological engagement with India. Comprising a wide range of themes such as village, city, class, caste, politics, gender, sexuality, media, food and education, this book presents a concise, yet in-depth sense of a sociological view of India today.
Chapter 24: Ageing, Ambivalent Modernities and the Pursuit of Value in India
Ageing, Ambivalent Modernities and the Pursuit of Value in India
The ethnographic record suggests that ageing figures centrally in people's understandings of the contemporary. This piece examines how it is that old age, as a socially constructed phase of the life course, has become part of new national imaginaries of subjectivity and value in India, and tied to larger debates about self, family, gender, society, nation and modernity.
Two meanings of old overlap in public conceptualisations: old as tied to the individual body and person experiencing the passage of time and accumulation of years over the life course and old in terms of a nation's or society's past—the way things ‘used ...