The Gift of Generations: Japanese and American Perspectives on Aging and the Social Contract

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Cambridge University Press, Jun 13, 1996 - Social Science - 226 pages
Modern societies today contend with population dynamics that have never before existed. As the number of older people grows, these countries must determine how best to provide for the needs of this population. The constraints are real: fiscal and material resources are finite and must be shared in a way that is perceived as just. As such, societies confront the fundamental question of who gets what, how, and why, and ultimately must reappraise the principles determining why some people are considered more worthy of help than others. This study systematically explores the Japanese and American answers to this fundamental question. This is the only US-Japan comparative work of its kind, utilizing systematically comparable data from both countries. It also draws on interview material that presents the choices, disappointments, and satisfactions of old age in the individual's own words.
 

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Contents

The Social Designation of Deserving Citizens
1
Two Communities Two Societies
18
Rights and Responsibilities in the Public Domain
34
The Practice of Protection and Intervention in
49
The Japanese Viewpoint
71
The American Viewpoint
103
Cultural Assumptions and Values
143
The Social Regulation of Interests
163
Conclusion
182
Methods of Research
195
Index
215
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Page 205 - In Readings in the Political Economy of Aging, edited by M. Minkler and C.

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