Ageism : Theories, Research, And Implications

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Marcus Cai


Ageism: Theories, Research, and Implications

Section 1: General Topic If there is prejudice against people of different cultures, sexual orientation, and class, it is no surprise that there is also prejudgment towards people based on their age. Ageism, coined by Robert Neil Butler is the discrimination against groups or individuals on the basis of their age. As it was discussed in Todd Nelson’s “Ageism: the Strange Case of Prejudice Against the Older you”, there are lot of factors on why people may have certain prejudicial attitudes towards the elderly. It could all be sourced from the society’s perspective on change, fear of death, institutionalization of ageism, etc. Since the study of age prejudice is fairly new and constantly expanding, researchers are still finding new discoveries on factors regarding ageism (Nelson, 2011, p. 37). Studies done by Lee, Carpenter, and Meyers suggests that television advertisements may alter the viewers attitudes about older adults by portraying them a certain way. These findings are important because among all forms of media, television is perhaps the most pervasive in society (Lee et al., 2006). Another study, “the role of individual difference variables in ageism” reveals that empathy traits, personality traits, and gratitude have influence on ageist beliefs. The researchers claim it may be crucial in weeding out certain characteristics of people who may show age
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