In this multidisciplinary portrait of men and their concerns in later life, the contributors use both a life course and gendered perspective to point out that the image and self-image of men are continually reconstructed throughout the life cycle. Issues examined include: the position of older men in society and the changes wrought in their status and roles over time; men's relationships to spouse, children, grandchildren and friends; and policy implications.

Older Men as Fathers and Grandfathers

Older Men as Fathers and Grandfathers

Older men as fathers and grandfathers
Jeanne L.Thomas

The last two decades have witnessed more frequent and varied portrayals of father-child relationships and increased professional recognition of fathers' roles in young children's development (e.g., Bozett & Hanson, 1991; Lamb, 1981). Popular culture and professional literatures provide fewer images of older men's relationships with adult children and with grandchildren. Indeed, the reification of the nuclear family implies that men and women past voting age have little involvement with either their fathers or their mothers. Scholars of family gerontology inform us that most middle-aged and older parents have close and satisfying relationships with their adult children and their grandchildren. But much of that work, like much research on parenthood earlier in the life ...

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