The concept of control has been seen by many as a central construct in the study of later life. Control has largely been seen and analyzed as a psychological construct. However, we believe the notion of control is a central cultural and experiential construct affiliated with core American symbols and values such as autonomy. The general goal of this 2 year proposed study is to examine the notion of control as a cultural and experiential construct and how native ideas on control are enacted in everyday life among a sample of 40 persons, age 70 and above. This proposed research expands on our prior project, """"""""The experience of suffering in later life"""""""" (NIA), in which the notion of control was one of several concepts directly related by informants to how they understood their own and others'suffering. Thus we wish to expand on this finding. The proposed research has three specific aims: 1. to examine native understandings of control among a sample of persons age 70 and above;2. to understand how control issues are worked out in health, everyday life and in everyday decisions;3. To describe differences in control understandings and practices on the basis of gender and ethnicity. The proposed research is anthropological, ethnographic and qualitative in nature and will use ethnographic interviewing as the primary research method as well as standard methods of qualitative data analysis.
This research would explore how a sample of 40 older people think about and use control in their everyday lives, especially for issues of health maintenance and decision making. The research would likely yield new information about issues of control in later life that would be useful to health care providers.
|Black, Helen K; Santanello, Holly R; Caruso, Christa J (2013) Managing threats against control in old age: a narrative inquiry. Nurs Res 62:430-7|