Negotiating active ageing at a Danish activity centre

Publikation: KonferencebidragKonferenceabstrakt til konferenceForskningfagfællebedømt

Question: With the ‘Year of active aging and solidarity between generations’ in the EU, active aging is staged as a key policy area in an aging Europe. This paper follows the discourse of active aging from the EU to a Danish municipality to an activity centre and its users, and asks what active aging means in the everyday live of the elderly. Active aging is formed in many arenas and takes a variety of forms with different actors focusing on physical, occupational, social and mental activity. This paper focuses on how the elderly takes part in this forming, by asking how the elderly negotiates and practices active ageing. The paper uses an activity centre in Copenhagen as its site of negotiation.
Methods: These questions have been explored with the use of ethnographic fieldwork and through a documentary study. The ethnographic fieldwork has been conducted at an activity centre with 4 months of participatory observation in 2011 and 2012, as well as 11 semi-structured, in-depth interviews with users of the centre. 4 of these users have been followed around during everyday activities such as doing groceries, picking up grandchildren, etc. The documentary study consists of documents and statements produced by the EU and a Danish municipality, as well as reports and articles published by mainstream media.
Results: The elderly at the activity centres perceives of active ageing differently than how it is formed in the documents explored. Active ageing is situated and contextualised in practice, and becomes a subject of dispute when the elderly feel subjected to specific activities. In this way active ageing is negotiable, and is simultaneously internalized and rejected in the practice of the elderly at the activity centre.
StatusAccepteret/In press - 2013
BegivenhedPlanning later life - Bioethics and politics in aging societies - Göttingen, Tyskland
Varighed: 10 jul. 201312 jul. 2013


KonferencePlanning later life - Bioethics and politics in aging societies

ID: 44385446