Human ageing is basically living in time. Therefore, the ways in which ageing is approached are strongly influenced by interpretations of what it is to live in time. Such interpretations are saturated with cultural meanings. The chronological (or rather, chronometric) concept of time that has become dominant in late modern societies appears to be purely instrumental and neutral. As such it not only obscures other forms of temporal orientations that are vital to understand ageing processes, but allows all kinds of cultural meanings (from ageist prejudice to political programs) to creep in, hiding behind the scientific prestige of statistics and exact measurements of people’s ages.
(from Routledge Handbook of Cultural Gerontology, 2015)Download article