Youth culture, ageing and identity

Authored by: Andy Bennett

Routledge Handbook of Cultural Gerontology

Print publication date:  June  2015
Online publication date:  June  2015

Print ISBN: 9780415631143
eBook ISBN: 9780203097090
Adobe ISBN: 9781136221033


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The concept of youth culture has long been associated with a series of distinctive leisure and lifestyle sensibilities shared by ‘youth’, that is to say, a socio-biological category consisting of young people between the ages of 15 and 25. More recently, however, this understanding of youth culture has been thrown into question. A key contributing factor here has been the increasing number of ageing ‘youth’ culturalists—people well into their 40s, 50s and 60s for whom the culture of their youth remains core to their understanding of themselves in the present (Bennett 2013). Satirical labels used by the media to describe the occasional ageing devotee of particular music genres and their associated styles, phrases such as ‘old punk’ and ‘ageing rocker’, now describe a significant minority of people in many places around the world.

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