World of Science. Series: Sociology, Philology, Cultural Studies
World of Science. Series: Sociology, Philology, Cultural Studies

2023, Vol. 14, No. 1. - go to content...

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Shlyakov A.V., Rebysheva L.V. [Aging in the optics of otherness] World of Science. Series: Sociology, Philology, Cultural Studies, 2023, Vol. 14, No. 1. Available at: (in Russian).

Aging in the optics of otherness

Shlyakov Aleksey Vladimirоvich
Industrial University of Tyumen, Tyumen, Russia

Rebysheva Lidiya Vasilyevna
Industrial University of Tyumen, Tyumen, Russia

Abstract. The article is devoted to the consideration of such a phenomenon as old age. Based on the analysis of research papers on old age, the article concludes that old age is a set of losses related to physical, socio-psychological, cognitive skills and benefits. Such losses contribute to the formation of an image of Another from old age, which does not correspond to the main trends of late modernity, which leads either to its marginalization and exclusion, or forced adaptation through rejuvenation. The author draws attention to the existence of two approaches to the assessment of old age: biological and social. The biological approach demonstrates the uselessness of the existence of an organism after the loss of its reproductive functions, in the social the possibility of the existence of old age is justified through the introduction of symbolic dimensions and the emergence of socially adaptive forms of its use. Old age is an artificially created anthropological artifact whose goals have been lost. The article highlights a number of aspects that influence the formation of the image of the Other, contributing to the emergence of gerоntophobia: the ethics of consumption, the proximity of death, falling out of the nomadic flow of movement. The otherness of old age in modern culture is determined by the inability to adopt a strategy of nomadism (movement) and the novelty of the hyperreal. There are no qualitative jumps in the nomadic horizontal movement of late modernity, and therefore differences and otherness are leveled. In the slowness of old age, there is a return to statuarity and the restoration of the Vertical lost in late modernity, which provides height (spirit) and depth (meaning), through which the image of the Other in the stopped object arises. The appearance of the Other in the event or semantic series prompts the experience of the possibility-the impossibility of co-presence. Old age, as otherness, acts as an instance, the presence of which leads a person to realize his own limitations, finiteness, uniqueness.

Keywords: aging; otherness; other; culture; gerontophobia; modernity; meaning

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