In the perspective of high modernity, uncertainty is considered the most important feature of social and biographical experience. The contemporary meaning of uncertainty is very different from both the pre-modern condition of material precariousness, and the modern idea of “exception” in a social reality completely taken for granted. Contemporary uncertainty is a “normal” aspect of everyday life and of one person’s biographical perspective. In the sociological research, the ambivalent meaning and the personal consequences of contemporary uncertainty have almost exclusively been empirically analysed for what concerns the social definition of young people in their difficult transition to adulthood. The paper argues that the same difficulties concern the social definition of other groups of age, in particular of the so-called “old” people. The attention is focused on the results of a qualitative research on a group of males and females aged over 60, living in the hinterland of Milan. The research has showed a great variety of situations, due not only to the traditional differences of gender, social class, family and health conditions, etc., but also to the specific experience of uncertainty that people have lived in the past and is living today. The paper shows the different kinds of uncertainty experienced by three different groups of aged persons. The paper argues that these groups correspond to three different generations, in a very sociological sense: the “oldest” generation has experienced the precariousness of the war and the pre-war situation, while the “intermediate” and the “youngest” generations have grown in the post-war reality, marked by the Italian socio-economic modernization. The different experiences of uncertainty that these generations have lived in the past have a strong influence on their biographical perspectives today. The final part of the paper examines the specific condition of the “youngest olds” and points out the new uncertainty that they indirectly experience as fathers and mothers of young people, who are more and more uncertain in their biographical construction.

Facchini, C., Rampazi, M. (2006). Generazioni anziane tra vecchie e nuove incertezze. RASSEGNA ITALIANA DI SOCIOLOGIA, 47(1), 61-90 [10.1423/21759].

Generazioni anziane tra vecchie e nuove incertezze

FACCHINI, CARLA;
2006

Abstract

In the perspective of high modernity, uncertainty is considered the most important feature of social and biographical experience. The contemporary meaning of uncertainty is very different from both the pre-modern condition of material precariousness, and the modern idea of “exception” in a social reality completely taken for granted. Contemporary uncertainty is a “normal” aspect of everyday life and of one person’s biographical perspective. In the sociological research, the ambivalent meaning and the personal consequences of contemporary uncertainty have almost exclusively been empirically analysed for what concerns the social definition of young people in their difficult transition to adulthood. The paper argues that the same difficulties concern the social definition of other groups of age, in particular of the so-called “old” people. The attention is focused on the results of a qualitative research on a group of males and females aged over 60, living in the hinterland of Milan. The research has showed a great variety of situations, due not only to the traditional differences of gender, social class, family and health conditions, etc., but also to the specific experience of uncertainty that people have lived in the past and is living today. The paper shows the different kinds of uncertainty experienced by three different groups of aged persons. The paper argues that these groups correspond to three different generations, in a very sociological sense: the “oldest” generation has experienced the precariousness of the war and the pre-war situation, while the “intermediate” and the “youngest” generations have grown in the post-war reality, marked by the Italian socio-economic modernization. The different experiences of uncertainty that these generations have lived in the past have a strong influence on their biographical perspectives today. The final part of the paper examines the specific condition of the “youngest olds” and points out the new uncertainty that they indirectly experience as fathers and mothers of young people, who are more and more uncertain in their biographical construction.
Articolo in rivista - Articolo scientifico
corso di vita; generazioni; anziani
Italian
61
90
Il saggio rientra tra le attività del Laboratorio sulla famiglia del Dipartimento di Sociologia e ricerca sociale
Facchini, C., Rampazi, M. (2006). Generazioni anziane tra vecchie e nuove incertezze. RASSEGNA ITALIANA DI SOCIOLOGIA, 47(1), 61-90 [10.1423/21759].
Facchini, C; Rampazi, M
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/10281/10359
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