Grandparents in a Digital Age: The Third Act (Hardback)
  • Grandparents in a Digital Age: The Third Act (Hardback)
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Grandparents in a Digital Age: The Third Act (Hardback)

(author)
£65.00
Hardback 258 Pages / Published: 15/01/2019
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This book investigates the changing culture of grandparenting. Depending on the group, the period, and the family, grandparents have been powerful patriarchs and matriarchs, reliable second parents, dependents, burdens, or community figures. The book examines the history of grandparenting and the changing depiction of grandparent culture from "old" to "hip," including the development of the celebrity grandparent, the emergence of media technologies that allow for new communication and relationships between grandparents and their grandchildren, new rituals associated with grandparenting, the growth of the marketing of grandparenting as a new stage of life, and the impact on our culture of the commodification of grandparenting. Prior to the twentieth century, within the United States the idea of the modern grandparent likely did not even exist. Many people did not live long enough to reach the grandparent stage of life. Today, people are living longer, and grandparenting is occupying a longer phase in one's life. Grandparenting is becoming its own life stage, where new rituals exclusive to grandparents are emerging. Newer technologies, such as Skype, Google Hangout and FaceTime, allow grandparents who are far away to establish relationships with their children. Many grandparents also use social media and blogs to chronicle their experiences. Some grandparents have turned their grandparent lifestyle into a business. The representation of grandparenting in popular culture is shifting as well. Grandparents are becoming their own figures on television and film programs, including reality shows. Others have been thrust into the public eye across social media. Marketers have realized the power of this new consumer subgroup and have begun to direct marketing campaigns to grandparents. Yet, despite the pervasive images of grandparents, some of which present empowered figures, grandparent representation in popular media continues to mimic many of the stereotypes commonly associated with aging, encouraging people to laugh at versus laugh with these figures. The Third Act: Grandparenting in a Digital Age examines grandparenting through history, interviews, and popular culture to study the changing image of grandparents in society.

Publisher: Lexington Books
ISBN: 9781498575782
Number of pages: 258
Dimensions: 229 x 152 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS
Dr. Laura Tropp, once again, ruptures the ways in which we think about everyday life events and relationships and, more importantly, how we experience them. In her first book, A Womb With A View, Tropp exposes a class-based branding and marketing of pregnant women. And now, in Grandparents in a Digital Age, Tropp poignantly explores the shifting images of aging to aptly challenge traditional notions of what it means to be a grandparent in our digital culture today. Simply put, Tropp pins the changing social function of grandparents in ways that no longer resonate with the archetypal role of aging. -- Roksana Badruddoja, Associate Professor of Sociology and Women and Gender Studies, Manhattan College
Grandparents in a Digital Age: The Third Act charts exciting new territory in its exploration of the media-rich lives of an often-overlooked population. Grounded in interviews with grandparents and those who market to them as well as textual analysis of the representations of grandparents in a variety of media (including advertising, television, film, user-generated media, and social media), Tropp makes visible the expansive popular culture world of grandparents that often remains unseen. This deftly written account explores how social, political, economic, and technological shifts in our digital culture are creating a new life stage that reinvents grandparenting and the grandparent identity. -- Emilie Zaslow, Pace University

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