Renegotiating identity and relationships: Men and women's adjustments to retirement

Jane Parry, Helen Barnes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Retirement is frequently a period of change, when the roles and relationships
associated with individuals’ previous labour market positions are transformed. It
is also a time when personal relationships, including the marital relationship and
relationships with friends and family, come under increased scrutiny and may be
realigned. Many studies of adjustment to retirement focus primarily on individual
motivation ; by contrast, this paper seeks to examine the structure of resources
within which such decisions are framed. The paper examines the contribution
that gender roles and identities make to the overall configuration of resources
available to particular individuals. It draws upon qualitative research conducted
with older people in four contrasting parts of the United Kingdom, and examines
the combination of labour market and non-labour-market activities in which they are involved prior to state retirement age and as they withdraw from paid work. It explores how older people invoke various gendered identities to negotiate change and continuity during this time. The paper argues that gender roles and identities are central to this process and that the reflexive deployment of gender may rank alongside financial resources and social capital in its importance to the achievement of satisfying retirement transitions. Amongst those interviewed, traditional gendered roles predominated, and these sat less comfortably with retirement for men than for women.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)213-233
JournalAgeing and Society
Volume24
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2004

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Renegotiating identity and relationships: Men and women's adjustments to retirement'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this