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The Senile Mind: Psychology and Old Age in the 1930s and 1940s

By Laura Hirshbein

Abstract

In the 1930s, some psychologists began to study and discuss the normal and pathological mental abilities of old age. This paper explores this research and its implications for an emerging definition of old age in the 1930s and 1940s. The argument is that these psychologists explained old age in terms of tests they had performed on children and young adults. In addition, these professionals projected their culturally bound assumptions onto their study of old age. In the process, psychologists helped to define old age as a problem that required a professional solution.

Topics: old age, history
Year: 2002
OAI identifier: oai:deepblue.lib.umich.edu:2027.42/83268
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