Interpersonal Communication in Older Adulthood: Interdisciplinary Theory and Research


Edited by: Mary Lee Hummert, John M. Wiemann & Jon F. Nussbaum

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  • Front Matter
  • Back Matter
  • Subject Index
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    • Identity and Development Harke A. Bosma, Tobi L. G. Graafsma, Harold D. Grotevant, and David J. de Levita
    • Interpersonal Communication in Older Adulthood Mary Lee Hummert. John M. Wiemann, and Jon F. Nussbaum
    • Gender Inequality at Work Gerry A. Jacobs


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  • Author Index

    About the Authors

    Ronald D. Adelman, M.D., an internist and geriatrician, is the Chief of the Division of Geriatrics at Winthrop-University Hospital in Mineola, New York. His major research interests include the physician-older patient relationship, elder mistreatment, healing and compassion in medicine, and geriatric education and training. He has published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, The Gerontologist, Ageing and Society, Language and Communication, and Communication Research. He is coauthor of Strategies for Helping Victims of Elder Mistreatment.

    David Andres, a social psychologist, is an Associate Member of the Centre for Research in Human Development and an Associate Professor in the Department of Psychology, Concordia University. His research interests include the areas of social and personality factors in aging and the application of multivariate statistics to research in social gerontology.

    Tannis Y. Arbuckle is a Professor in the Psychology Department at Concordia University. She is also Associate Director of Concordia's Centre for Research in Human Development and a researcher in the Canadian Aging Research Network (CARNET). Her research focuses on age-related changes in cognition and language and psychosocial mediators of those changes.

    MaryHelen Brown (Ph.D., The University of Texas at Austin, 1982) is an Associate Professor of Communication at Auburn University. Her research interests include communication and aging, informal organizational communication, and tabloid journalism.

    Gillian Cohen is Professor of Psychology at the Open University in the United Kingdom and a Fellow of the British Psychological Society. She is a cognitive psychologist working in the Human Cognition Research Laboratory, a group of psychologists and cognitive scientists. Her research has been concerned with cognitive aspects of aging, focusing on the effects of aging on language and on memory. She is particularly interested in everyday memory and favors an approach that combines laboratory experiments with more naturalistic research. Her interest in the topic of memory for proper names arises directly out of conversations with elderly people who cite this as one of their main problems. She is also interested in the long-term retention of knowledge acquired through formal education. She is the author of Memory in the Real World (1989).

    Rieko Darling (Ph.D., Florida State University, 1987) was Director of Audiology and Speech Pathology Services at the Methodist Hospital in Houston, Texas, and Assistant Professor of Otorhinolaryngology and Communicative Sciences, Baylor College of Medicine. Her research interests include auditory-evoked potential, central auditory processing, and geriatric audiology.

    Susan Fox is Assistant Professor in the Department of Communication at Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo. She has published a number of papers on reactions to patronizing language, intergenerational contact theory, and age stereotypes. The focus of her doctoral research is on “interability” communication, that is, talk between persons with disabilities and able-bodied communicators.

    Erika Friedmann, Ph.D., is Professor and Chair of the Department of Health and Nutrition Sciences at Brooklyn College, City University of New York. She conducts research on the interaction of social, psychological, and physiological factors on health, with a particular emphasis on cardiovascular health. She has published in Heart and Lung, Anthrozoos, Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease, and Public Health Reports. She is currently President of the International Society for Anthrozoology.

    Howard Giles is Professor and Chair of Communication at the University of California, Santa Barbara. He was founding editor of the Journal of Language and Social Psychology and founding coeditor of the Journal of Asian Pacific Communication and is currently editor of Human Communication Research. Although his present work revolves around intergenerational issues and aging, he also has long-standing projects under way in language effects, intercultural communication, and bilingualism.

    Dolores Pushkar Gold, a social psychologist, is the Director of the Centre for Research in Human Development and a Professor in the Department of Psychology at Concordia University. She is a member of the Canadian Aging Research Network (CARNET) and conducts research examining the influence of individual and social factors on well-being and competence in the elderly.

    Michele G. Greene, Dr.P.H., is Associate Professor in the Department of Health and Nutrition Sciences, Brooklyn College, City University of New York. She is also Senior Research Investigator, Division of Geriatrics, Winthrop-University Hospital, Mineola, New York. She has been conducting research on the physician-patient relationship for more than 15 years. In particular, she has studied the determinants, outcomes, and interactional dynamics of communication between primary care physicians and older patients. She is currently studying a longitudinal series of visits between physicians and older patients to determine how the physician-patient relationship develops and changes over time. Her work has appeared in such journals as Language and Communication, The Gerontologist, Social Science and Medicine, and Communication Research. Her other research interests include women's health issues; medical education and training; and the social, psychological, and cultural determinants of health attitudes and behaviors.

    Jake Harwood is Assistant Professor in Communcation Studies at the University of Kansas, Lawrence. He has published widely on many facets of intergenerational issues, including media representations of the elderly, middle age and communication, and cross-cultural aspects of ageist language.

    Mary Lee Hummert (Ph.D., University of Kansas) is an Assistant Professor in the Communication Studies Department at the University of Kansas and an Assistant Scientist in the university's Gerontology Center. Her research centers on the relationship between stereotypes of the elderly and communication with the elderly, for which she has received a 5-year grant from the National Institute on Aging. Her work has appeared in Psychology and Aging, Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, Annual Review of Gerontology and Geriatrics, and the International Journal of Aging and Human Development. She has also coedited a special issue of the journal Communication Research on the topic of communication and aging.

    Susan Kemper is Professor of Psychology at the University of Kansas. Through her involvement with the Child Language Ph.D. program and the Gerontology Center at the university, she has promoted a “life-span” approach to the study of psycholinguistics. She has published extensively in the area of geriatric psycholinguistics, documenting a wide range of changes to older adults’ speech production and comprehension. She has also investigated how Alzheimer's dementia affects language production. Currently, she is evaluating the effectiveness of speech accommodations for facilitating older adults’ comprehension.

    Sheree Kwong See is a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Psychology at McMaster University. Her research focuses upon cognitive processes in later life, as well as social psychological influences upon these processes. She has presented her work at the annual conferences of the Canadian Psychological Association and the Canadian Association on Gerontology.

    Kelly Lyons completed her Ph.D. in experimental psychology at the University of Kansas in 1993. Her research focused on the effects of normal aging and Alzheimer's dementia on semantic memory. She has also examined the effects of Alzheimer's dementia on language, including wording-finding problems during spontaneous speech and linguistic simplifications arising from neuropsychological impairments. Currently, she is investigating how spouses and other companions learn to accommodate to the disruptions of language that result from Alzheimer's dementia.

    W. Bryan Meneer recently completed requirements for his honors psychology degree from McMaster University.

    Jon F. Nussbaum (Ph.D., Purdue University) is a Professor at the University of Oklahoma in the Department of Communication and is a Senior Fellow at the Oklahoma Center on Aging. He is coauthor of Communication and Aging and editor of Life-Span Communication: Normative Processes. He has contributed several recent articles to such publications as Ageing and Society, International Journal of Aging and Human Development, and Communication Education. He has been a Fulbright research scholar at the University of Wales in Cardiff.

    Connie Rizzo, M.D., is an Adjunct Assistant Professor in the Department of Biology at Pace University in New York. Upon graduating from medical school, she temporarily has set aside her clinical training to pursue a lifelong interest in teaching undergraduate science. Her principal interests lie in reforms needed in premedical and medical education, and the role literature and the humanities must play in that process, both in shaping the student and in physicians’ dealings with bioethical decisions. She has done a considerable amount of work with troubled adolescents, and hopes to resume her postgraduate medical training in psychiatry, specifically, child and adolescent psychiatry.

    Ellen Bouchard Ryan is Professor of Psychology in the Department of Psychiatry and Director of Gerontological Studies at McMaster University. She has contributed recent articles to the Journal of Gerontology: Psychological Sciences, Psychology and Aging, and the International Journal of Aging and Human Development. Her research focuses upon social psychological and cognitive aspects of language across the life span as well as intergroup attitudes.

    Bryan C. Taylor is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Speech Communication and Theatre Arts, Texas A&M University. His research interests include the use of critical theory and interpretive methods to study the relations among language, subjectivity, institutions, and power. His recent publications have appeared in the Western Journal of Speech Communication, Communication Research, Quarterly Journal of Speech, and Journal of Applied Communication Research.

    Diane Trovato recently completed the requirements for her honors psychology degree from McMaster University.

    William A. Villaume (Ph.D., The Ohio State University, 1984) is an Associate Professor of Communication at Auburn University. His research interests include communication and aging, interaction involvement, and the use of verbal aspect in the chara?terization of communicative action.

    John M. Wiemann (Ph.D., Purdue University) is Professor of Communication at the University of California, Santa Barbara. His research interests include communicative competence, cross-cultural influences on beliefs about talk, nonverbal communication, and communication, health, and aging. He coedits the Sage Annual Reviews of Communication Research series and has recently coedited special issues of Communication Research (on communication and aging) and American Behavioral Scientist (on the social psychology of language). His recent books include Communication, Health and the Elderly and “Miscommunication” and Problematic Talk (both with H. Giles and N. Coupland) and Strategic Communication (with J. Daly). He has been a W. K. Kellogg Foundation National Fellow and a Fulbright-Hays Senior Research Scholar at the University of Bristol, England.

    Angie Williams completed her doctoral research at the University of California, Santa Barbara, and thereafter was appointed Research Fellow in Sociolinguistics at the University of Wales College of Cardiff. She is now Assistant Professor of Communication at the University of Oklahoma, Norman, and has published on issues of intergroup accommodation, especially as they relate to intergenerational satisfaction and dissatisfaction.

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