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, aging
the change of properties that occurs in some metals after heat treatment or cold working
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005


the chronological process of growing physically older. However, there is also a social dimension in which chronology is less important than the meanings attached to the process. Different cultural values and social expectations apply according to gender and age group, and therefore there are socially-structured variations in the personal experience of ageing.

EISENSTADT (Generation to Generation, 1964) studied the political role of age groups and argued that age stratification is an important stabilizing influence in societies where:

  1. two sets of values coexist within the social structure – the particularism of family ties and the universalism of the public division of labour (here age groups act as buffers between the public and the private domain and give members solidarity and support as well as orienting them to the adult world of work); and
  2. the opportunity for the young to have full participation in adult society is blocked by systems of KINSHIP and DESCENT (here the age group becomes the basis for status and also power struggles between the generations).

In DEMOGRAPHY the terms ageing society and youthful society are used to indicate the age composition of the population. A youthful society is one in which there is a preponderance of people in young age groups (under 15 years) because of a high BIRTH RATE and low LIFE EXPECTANCY. An ageing society is one in which reductions in the birth rate and greater longevity have resulted in a rising proportion of the population belonging to the older age groups. For example, CENSUS data for the UK shows that in 1911 men over 65 years and women over 60 years comprised 6.8% of the population, whereas in 1981 they comprised 17.1%.

The growing proportion of older people in the population, and the spread of early retirement, has led to age being perceived as a social problem. Older people are subject to negative stereotyping and diminished SOCIAL STATUS. Even academic discourse promotes negative imagery through such terms as ‘burden of dependency’ and ‘dependency ratio’, which refer to the number of economically inactive older people in relation to the number of economically active younger people whose labour provides the services consumed by the older generation. In the US, AGEISM has become a political issue through the emergence of movements, such as the Grey Panthers, determined to safeguard the citizen rights of older people and counter the negative imagery of old age promoted by the commercialization of youth. See also MIDLIFE CRISIS, YOUTH CULTURE.

Collins Dictionary of Sociology, 3rd ed. © HarperCollins Publishers 2000


British variant of aging.

aging, Brit. ageing

1. The progressive change in a chemical and physical material with increased age; in natural rubber and synthetic elastomers, usually marked by a deterioration caused by oxidation. Also see accelerated aging, age hardening, age softening.
2. The storing of varnish to improve clarity and gloss.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Architecture and Construction. Copyright © 2003 by McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
References in periodicals archive ?
Our findings suggest that the relationship between plasma hsCRP concentration and mortality in Finnish nonagenarians is dependent on apoE [epsilon]4-allele carrier status.
Nevertheless, our study results indicate that the prognostic value of hsCRP in predicting total mortality of Finnish nonagenarians is dependent on the apoE polymorphism.
Apolipoprotein E genotypes relates to plasma C-reactive protein, lipid levels and longevity in nonagenarians. Clin Endocrinol (Oxf) 2006;64:265-70.
"We are the second center to report that despite overall poor prognosis in thrombolized octogenarians and nonagenarians, approximately 30%-40% can return to a prestroke level of ability and function [compared with the younger cohort]," they noted, referring to a study that evaluated outcomes based only on previous disability (and not age) and found that many patients returned to a prestroke level of function after thrombolysis (Can.
So at one point I ended up on one table which was more of an alumni homecoming of nonagenarians, which made me feel like a youngster.
These nonagenarians were all, in our Filipino super-extended family system, titas.
I thought the song was particularly touching, and poignant, at a reunion of nonagenarians, where so much of the talk was about becoming forgetful.
There was one more nonagenarian at that party, who wasn't from St.
The happy nonagenarians are Gladys, Jack Applegate, May Cawtheray, May Hepworth, Ruth Hirst, Edna Jessop, Margaret Ramsden, Mary Walton and Winifred Ward.
Many of them have lived to be nonagenarians, including Liverpool-born Harry Rabinowitz -still with us and one-time conductor of the BBC Revue Orchestra.
The trio have set up their own club called the Gliding Nonagenarians to organise regular flights - but have bent the rules to let 84-year-old Nell Skinner become a member.
Irene Hale, aged 91; Brenig Owen, aged 93; and Peggy Barrett, aged 96, have set up their own club called the Gliding Nonagenarians. They plan to take to the skies with Cotswold Gliding Club on July 10 from Aston Down, near Minchinhampton.