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Social Sciences Week seminar | What is ageism and what can we do about it?


A presentation and discussion on ageism in our community by sociologist Dr Peta Cook

Start Date

12 Sep 2018 10:30 am

End Date

12 Sep 2018 11:30 am


Medical Sciences Precinct, Hobart

RSVP / Contact

Very limited places. Enquiries to

Ageism – prejudice based in a set of ideas, attitudes and beliefs regarding chronological age and the ageing process – is commonly experienced by older adults. These experiences additionally emerge from negative social myths about older age which include standardised judgements on personality, cognitive function, levels of social connections and integration, and physical appearance and performance. Such myths are evidenced throughout society, including healthcare provision. These can be potentially challenged through intergenerational programs, which bring younger and older generations together. Evaluations of such programs, however, have been limited. In addition, visual research methods have the potential to challenge ageism by supporting older adults to represent and document their own lives and ageing. Translating such work beyond academia and individual projects, has, however, been limited. In this presentation, Peta will examine the ways in which ageism manifests in society, medicine, and in healthcare, and suggest ways that we – as academics, community groups, and individuals – can confront these attitudes. As part of this presentation, she will include the community engagements she has explored in her own work

Dr Peta Cook is a Senior Lecturer of Sociology at the School of Social Sciences at the University of Tasmania. She is a sociologist of knowledge, with a specific focus on ageing, medical science, health and illness, and identity and embodiment. Her research is primarily concerned with what forms of knowledge count and why; how this knowledge is produced; and personal mean-making and experiences of ageing, and health and illness.

Hosted by the Wicking Dementia Education and Research Centre (College of Health and Medicine) and the School of Social Sciences (College of Arts, Law, and Education), University of Tasmania for Social Sciences Week.


Institute for Social Change
University of Tasmania
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