Ageing, corporeality and embodiment by Chris Gilleard, Paul Higgs

By Chris Gilleard, Paul Higgs

This publication investigates the emergence of a 'new getting old' and its realisation during the physique. The paintings explores new kinds of embodiment eager about identification and care of the self, that have obvious the physique develop into a website for getting older in a different way - for growing old with out turning into old.

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Extra resources for Ageing, corporeality and embodiment

Sample text

Perhaps this had long been the case, but from this point such ignorance and distortions mattered more as the officials of local and national government had the means to check personal accounts of age with ‘official’ records. By the middle of the twentieth century chronological age and date of birth had become civic identifiers appearing in nearly all forms of private and public documentation. At this high point of first modernity, agedness was defined and understood almost entirely in chronological terms.

Why the Body? This then is the aim of our book, to explore the effortful, agonistic processes of identitywork and lifestyling in later life which we see being conducted in and through the body. The body in later life, we will argue, needs to be viewed as a site of ‘positive’ agency where social ‘difference’ is performed, contested and renegotiated. The ‘new’ ageing as practice, narrative and as experience has made it more possible than previously for the body in later life to become a site for the expression of identities and lifestyles that are other than aged, other than old.

Acknowledging that human beings can and do influence the conditions under which they live, these new ways of narrating and performing age have emphasised desire, potential and agency over need, vulnerability and limitation. Without also acknowledging the potential of the various embodying projects and practices to be undermined, such applications however risk building castles out of sand. What is most evident about the new ‘ageing’ is that it is as much a sociology of ‘not becoming’ old as it is one of ‘becoming’ old differently.

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