Publication details

Ageing in the changing countryside : The experience of rural Czechs



Year of publication 2020
Type Article in Periodical
Magazine / Source Sociologia Ruralis
MU Faculty or unit

Faculty of Social Studies

Keywords rural ageing; rural gerontology; social change; biographical contextualisation; belonging; post-socialism; Czech Republic
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Description Gerontological research has extensively focused on the experiences of people ageing within changing social contexts. However, accounts from the context of the European post-socialist transformation are missing. In addition, there is a lack of theoretical understanding concerning how older people experience ageing as part of the dynamic process of rural change. In this article, we present the perspectives of older Czech rural residents on living and ageing in the changing countryside. Based on 20 qualitative interviews with older adults, we show how they interpret contemporary changes in three major areas: politics and economy, infrastructure and technology, and local population and community life. Embedded in a constructionist approach, we aim to understand how their interpretations of current changes are related to their views on the past, to their self-positioning within current and past changes and their sense of local and social belonging. We introduce the concept of biographical contextualisation, which grasps the temporal horizon of meaning-making with regard to contemporary changes in rural life.
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