Determining the social status of a certain person based on age can bring many problems to society. In some cases, some elderly were seen as godly humans because of how long they have lived. According to Hillier & Barrow’s text Aging, the Individual and Society, the few survivors in the ancient times that lived to be in their 40s were treated with respect and awe, honored ceremonially and socially as keepers of the memories. However, not all ancient societies treated the elderly in this way. Some elderly were seen as burdens and even killed because they did not maintain their good physical and mental health. As the shift of social equality began to grow, however, many people believed the status of someone should not be a birthright or based on age at all (Hoyer & Roodin, 2009). According to The Huffington Post, as of today Korean culture still encourages respect for elders. The society places a strong emphasis on adult children caring for their parents. Koreans traditionally have a large celebration on their 60th birthday to celebrate their long life. In India, older people are often regarded as the head of their family, and they play an important role in raising their grandchildren (The Huffington Post, 2017). Gerontologists believe that ageism can me changed in America through education and the changing health and lifestyle of the “new” elderly, who are healthier and more vigorous than the population of elders before them.
According to the Hillier & Barrow’s text Aging, the Individual and Society, the study of aging can be examined from many different perspectives. For example, it can be viewed through emotional, physiological, social, cognitive, or philosophical lenses. An example of a social problems approach is examining patterns of social behavior and institutional structures that negatively affect the quality of life of aging individuals. Gerontology is a multidisciplinary study of the human aging process from maturity to old age and has added a dimension to the broad understanding of what it means to physically grow older. The key perspectives in gerontology are biological, sociological, and psychological processes (Hillier & Barrow, 2015). The understanding of gerontology allows people to plan for their own well-being in their later life and to consider issues of quality of later life on a social level (Hillier & Barrow, 2015).