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Chapter 3

Chapter 3

11 Pages
67 Views
Winter 2011

Department
Sociology
Course Code
SOC246H1
Professor
William Magee
Chapter
3

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Week 8: March 7
LIFE COURSE
Chapter 3 Life Course Transitions”
Introduction:
Age norms: informal rules that specify age-appropriate roles and behaviour
oDetermine when people marry, how many children they have etc.
life course approach: human development is not only based on biological
processes but also influenced by psychological, social, historical and
economic factors
The Life Course Framework
the life course framework: historical events, individual decisions and
opportunities, and our early life experiences determine later life outcome
oE.g. individual decision: having a child later in life—at a time when this
couple should be saving for retirement, they will be paying for college
The lifelong consequences of individual decisions
The life course of individuals is shaped partially by such
decisions and partially by events that are beyond a persons
control
As people age, they move through different social roles that provide them with
different identities—student, husband or wife, worker, parent (These role
changes= transitions)
oTransitions are age-graded: there are certain expectations when the
transitions from one role to another should take place
www.notesolution.com
E.g. societal expectations regarding when people should bear
their first children
Countertransitions: produced by others role changes
oE.g. when you have a child, your father automatically becomes a
grandfather
Trajectory: a series of transitions
oE.g. The trajectory of work: three stages—1) preparation for work
(education), 2) work and 3) retirement
oThere are multiple pathways in the ordering and timing of life events
(trajectories are not stable and dont have a clear order as in the
example)
E.g. gender differences in employment trajectories—women
having more disorderly work careers than men as they move in
and out of the labor force to care for children
Influences on the life course approach
oAge Stratification Theory:
Age is one of the bases for regulating social interaction and for
ascribing status
The timing of the entry into and exit from social positions has
age-related consequences
The pattern of biological aging and the sequence of age-related
roles are altered by historical events
www.notesolution.com
oThe Study of Age Grading
Age grades: ways of using age as a social category to group
people by status (each group has a distinct role)
6 grades: youth, junior warrior, senior warrior, junior elder, senior
elder, and retired elder
Age, Period, and Cohort Effect
Age effect: a change that occurs as a result of advancing age (E.g. declining
health)
Period effect: the impact of a historical event on the entire society (E.g. in
1963, when police in Alabama turned fire houses on black children who were
demonstrating peacefully for the integration of lunch counters, buses, and
stores, public opinion across the nation swung in favour of civil rights
Cohort effects: the social change that occurs as one cohort replaces another
(E.g. Southerners who were raised during an era when racial segregation was
legal hold more conservative racial attitudes than their grandchildren, who
grew up after segregation was outlawed
oMembers of an older cohort who hold one set of attitudes die, they are
replaced by younger people who hold different attitudes
These attitudes of the population as a whole will shift as a result
of this cohort replacement
Cross-Sectional Research
Cross-sectional research: comparing people of different age cohorts at a
single point in time
www.notesolution.com

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Description
Week 8: March 7 LIFE COURSE Chapter 3 Life Course Transitions Introduction: Age norms: informal rules that specify age-appropriate roles and behaviour o Determine when people marry, how many children they have etc. life course approach: human development is not only based on biological processes but also influenced by psychological, social, historical and economic factors The Life Course Framework the life course framework: historical events, individual decisions and opportunities, and our early life experiences determine later life outcome o E.g. individual decision: having a child later in lifeat a time when this couple should be saving for retirement, they will be paying for college The lifelong consequences of individual decisions The life course of individuals is shaped partially by such decisions and partially by events that are beyond a persons control As people age, they move through different social roles that provide them with different identitiesstudent, husband or wife, worker, parent (These role changes= transitions) o Transitions are age-graded: there are certain expectations when the transitions from one role to another should take place www.notesolution.com E.g. societal expectations regarding when people should bear their first children Countertransitions: produced by others role changes o E.g. when you have a child, your father automatically becomes a grandfather Trajectory: a series of transitions o E.g. The trajectory of work: three stages1) preparation for work (education), 2) work and 3) retirement o There are multiple pathways in the ordering and timing of life events (trajectories are not stable and dont have a clear order as in the example) E.g. gender differences in employment trajectorieswomen having more disorderly work careers than men as they move in and out of the labor force to care for children Influences on the life course approach o Age Stratification Theory: Age is one of the bases for regulating social interaction and for ascribing status The timing of the entry into and exit from social positions has age-related consequences The pattern of biological aging and the sequence of age-related roles are altered by historical events www.notesolution.com
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