Aging in Film
University of Kansas Aging in Film Classes
Up nearly 30 years since the turn of the 20th century, life expectancy for the total population in the U.S. reached the all-time high of 80 years old. The increase in life expectancy and the post-World War II baby boom (1946-64) will result in a dramatic increase in the proportion of adults over 65 during the next 20 years (to one-fourth of the total population). “The challenge of reinventing very old age,” writes gerontologist Laura Carstensen, “will be the greatest social revolution the baby boom generation ever faced.” How can we imagine and support the life course as something other than biological, social, and productive decline? How does age correlate with our value to society? How do we create and sustain infrastructures and institutions that enable us to release our greatest potential across the entire life span? We will consider these questions as we examine constructions of aging in documentary and commercial narrative films.
Associate Professor of English and American Studies
1445 Jayhawk Blvd., Wescoe 3001
University of Kansas
Lawrence, KS 66045-7594
Films vary from one semester to another, depending on which ones are available for streaming. Streaming makes the films readily available to students both before class for study and during class for discussion. Each film in the list below is linked to more information about it.